Singapore studying implications of ruling

China's South Sea Fleet taking part in a drill in the Xisha Islands, or the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea on May 5, 2016.
China's South Sea Fleet taking part in a drill in the Xisha Islands, or the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea on May 5, 2016.PHOTO: AFP

Singapore is studying the Arbitral Tribunal's ruling in the Philippines versus China case and its implications on the Republic and the wider region, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said yesterday.

"Singapore has taken note of the Award made by the Arbitral Tribunal convened under Annex VII to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos) on 12 July 2016 on the case between the Republic of the Philippines and the People's Republic of China.

"We are studying the Award and its implications on Singapore and the wider region," the ministry said in a statement.

"Singapore is not a claimant state and we do not take sides on the competing territorial claims. However, we support the peaceful resolution of disputes among claimants in accordance with universally-recognised principles of international law, including Unclos, without resorting to the threat or use of force.

"As a small state, we strongly support the maintenance of a rules-based order that upholds and protects the rights and privileges of all states," the MFA said.

 

"Singapore values our longstanding and friendly relations with all parties, bilaterally and in the context of Asean. We urge all parties to fully respect legal and diplomatic processes, exercise self-restraint and avoid conducting any activities that may raise tensions in the region," the statement said.

"Singapore supports the full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and the expeditious conclusion of a legally-binding Code of Conduct in the South China Sea," it added.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 13, 2016, with the headline 'Singapore studying implications of ruling'. Print Edition | Subscribe