China-Philippines bilateral ties seen as ‘seriously injured’

from ANN: The Chinese government on Tuesday said the Philippines’ arbitration bid over its maritime dispute in the West Philippine Sea has “seriously injured”  its bilateral relations with China.

The Chinese Embassy in Manila in a press briefing insisted that the Philippines should engaged on direct negotiations to solve the maritime dispute instead of its arbitration bid before the United Nations (UN) International Tribunal for the law of the Sea (Itlos).

The embassy said the government failed to notify and seek “China’s consent” before initiating arbitration bid.

It said China has every right not to accept arbitration initiated by the Philippines in conformity with international laws.

China said it hoped the Philippines would “correct its mistake” in dealing with maritime dispute.

It added that it had long been exercising sovereignty over west Philippine Sea (South China Sea) and that the Philippines only took interest after oil reserves were found in the 1970s.