South China Sea ruling won't be binding on Taiwan: Premier Lin

A Taiwanese coast guard secures a C-130 military transport plane on the tarmac in Itu Aba, which the Taiwanese call Taiping, on March 23, 2016.
A Taiwanese coast guard secures a C-130 military transport plane on the tarmac in Itu Aba, which the Taiwanese call Taiping, on March 23, 2016.PHOTO: REUTERS

TAIPEI - An international tribunal's ruling on the South China Sea disputes will not be legally binding on Taiwan, Central News Agency (CNA) reported on Tuesday (July 12), citing Premier Lin Chuan.

Mr Lin said Taiwan stands firm on its sovereignty claim to islands in the South China Sea, including Taiping, also known as Itu Aba.

"That (the ruling) will be not legally binding on us, and our stance will remain unchanged," Mr Lin said in response to reporters' questions on whether the ruling would undercut Taiwan's claims in the South China Sea.

His comments came just hours before the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague said that "none of the Spratly Islands is capable of generating extended maritime zones". Taiping is the largest in the Spratly islands.

Although Taiwan is not party to the case, its claims in the South China Sea are similar to those of China, and Taiping island under Taiwan's control was brought up in testimony during the court hearings, according to CNA.

The case was brought by the Philippines, arguing that China's claims to the South China Sea do not comply with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.