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Past And Present of The South China Sea ep.3: China's Claim on the South China Sea

CCTV.com

07-04-2016 12:28 BJT

Full coverage: The South China Sea Issue

As early as the 1980s, China had brought forward the initiative to 'shelve differences and engage in joint development' with the hope of solving disputes progressively with all parties involved.  The aim is using 'peaceful negotiations and common development' to achieve a 'win-win' and 'all-win' outcome.

Zheng He, also known as Eunuch Sanbao, commanded a fleet of 317 ships to drop their anchors five miles away from Calicut. 868 civil officials, 442 naval officers and 10000 soldiers, sailors, artisans prepared for the landing in an orderly way. The King came to the port anxiously to welcome China's envoy in person. Such a feeling of anxiety and surprise was shared by each King along the maritime Silk Road.

But surprisingly enough, the purpose of this vast fleet is not aggressive expansion, but peaceful cooperation and co-prosperity.

A review of history will shed lights on the present, peace and cooperation has been upheld by the Chinese in their two thousand years of development.

As early as the 1980s, China had brought forward the initiative to “shelve differences and engage in joint development” with the hope of solving disputes progressively with all parties involved through “peaceful negotiations and common development” and achieving a “win-win” and “all-win” outcome.

China's positive action is embraced with widespread welcome and response.

In May 2000, the two governments of China and the Philippines issued a joint statement about bilateral cooperation framework in the 21st century,saying “(both parties) agree to promote the peaceful settlement of disputes through bilateral consultations and negotiations in a friendly manner based on generally accepted principles of international laws, including UNCLOS 1982”. In 2002, China and Asian member states signed the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea.

In the face of China's goodwill, the Philippines, determined to legalize its unlawful occupation, tries to bring the United States to its side at all means and spares no efforts in inviting western companies to engage in predatory exploitation of oil and gas resources.

"After the 1990s, a multitude of US petroleum and natural gas companies set their foot in the exploitation of petrol and gas in the South China Sea. The US have been constantly adjusting its policies, strengthening its defense cooperation with the Philippines and conducting joint military drills with it every year ever since.

Furthermore, the US links the South China Sea issue up with its national interests, sends military aircraft and vessels willfully to intrude and disturb the order of the South China Sea. Meanwhile, it advertises and carries out its so-called 'freedom of navigation program'," Li Guoqiang, Deputy Director of the Institute of Chinese Borderland Studies, Chinese Academy of Social Science," said.

On January 22nd, 2013, ten years after the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in The South China Sea was signed, the Philippines unilaterally submitted the South China Sea disputes to a mandatory arbitration.

Doing this, it tore up a series of agreements it had signed and pledged to abide by. One year before that, the Chinese government proposed to restart of the China-Philippines consultation mechanism for confidence-building measures, but this proposal has once again fallen on deaf ears.

For a long time, the Chinese government has been following the approach of solving disputes through peaceful negotiations, while the Philippine government has been acting capriciously. It failed to keep its word and forcibly closed the door of bilateral negotiations.

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