US, Australia, Japan to Philippines, China: Follow Arbitration Ruling

US, Australia, Japan to Philippines, China: Follow Arbitration Ruling

US, Australia, Japan to Philippines, China: Follow Arbitration Ruling

ASEAN diplomats have previously accused China of stalling on the process, which was laid out in a previous agreement, the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea.

China expects greater development of the Asean community, which will contribute more to regional peace, stability and prosperity and better benefit the people of its member countries, Xi said.

Kono suggested before his meeting with Wang that he would remind Beijing of the importance of the rule of law in dealing with disputes in the South China Sea, where several Asean nations have overlapping territorial claims.

He was referring to the Australia-Japan-United States Trilateral Strategic Dialogue Ministerial Joint Statement, which called on China and the Philippines "to abide by the Arbitral Tribunal's 2016 Award in the Philippines-China arbitration, as it is final and legally binding on both parties".

The foreign ministers agreed to start operating a bilateral aerial and maritime communication mechanism as soon as possible in order to prevent any unintended clashes between the two countries in the East China Sea.

They also expressed satisfaction over the framework for a Code of Conduct in the South China Sea and agreed to make joint efforts so that their negotiations on a code of behavior in the waters can be started within the year.

He said China had long finished its land reclamation project.

In Manila on Tuesday, Foreign Minister Wang Yi attended the grand celebration of Asean's 50th anniversary along with his counterparts from Asean and other nations.

Earlier, South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha met Ri for three minutes at a dinner at the forum.

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono later clarified that they were not implying that Philippines was not heeding the ruling, but they were noting it was an important and legally binding decision.

A Southeast Asian diplomat told the AP on Sunday that Vietnam had pushed for stronger language despite opposition from numerous ministers, whose countries rely heavily on China for trade and investment.

Wang did not mention which "outside countries" may disrupt the "stability" in the South China Sea, but during his first official visit he called on the Asean to "unite and stand together" against other "intervention" in the disputed waters.

A Chinese H-6K bomber patrols the islands and reefs in the South China Sea.

China's claims of sovereignty over the South China Sea were entirely rejected by a decision handed down by a court of arbitration in July past year.

"I was disappointed", Wang said in the meeting with Kono, which was held here on August 7 on the sidelines of foreign ministers' meetings related to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

He added that "heated discussions" took place about North Korea's missile tests and South China Sea disputes among the foreign ministers at the Asean forum and most countries believed United Nations sanctions on Pyongyang should be fully enforced.

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