During President Benigno Aquino III’s state visit to Japan, aside from strengthening ties between the two nations, he also mentioned increasing concerns over China’s continuous reclamation activities.
To this, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying dismissed Aquino’s remarks as ‘ridiculous’ and ‘unreasonable. She also wanted a stop to the provocation on the ongoing territorial disputes in the Spratly Islands.
“I’m shocked about such ridiculous and unreasonable comments and strongly oppose them,” she said in a press briefing.
Hua explained that under China’s history, the disputed waters were part of the South China Sea. Therefore, it was the Philippines which trespassed China’s territory, violating the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC).
“The Philippines has illegally occupied some of China’s islands in the South China Sea since the 1970s and its stranded warship near the Ren’ai Reef has served as an installation since 1999 in an attempt to seize the reef,” she said.
Hua then urged Aquino to stop the provocation and continue on with the peaceful negotiations on the territorial disputes.
“China is a responsible country keeping its promises and is committed to resolving disputes through direct negotiation with relevant countries. The Chinese government holds firm resolution to safeguard its territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests,” she added.