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Philippines seeks speedy UN ruling on sea dispute with China

Published on Jun 19, 2014 11:51 AM
 A Chinese Coast Guard vessel (R) passes near the Chinese oil rig, Haiyang Shi You 981 (L) in the South China Sea, about 210 km from the coast of Vietnam on June 13, 2014. The Philippines said China's "expansion agenda" in the disputed South China Sea threatened security and stability in the region, calling on all claimant states to halt construction activities that may raise tensions. -- PHOTO: REUTERSCopyright: REUTERS

MANILA (AFP) - The Philippines said on Thursday it would ask a UN tribunal to expedite its appeal to declare China's expansive claims to the South China Sea invalid, as tensions over the contested waters worsen.

A formal request will be filed seeking a resolution on the case within the year or early 2015, foreign department spokesman Charles Jose said.

"We are consulting our legal team to present a request to the tribunal if it can hasten its process earlier, rather than later," Mr Jose told AFP. He declined to say when the request would be formally transmitted.

Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario separately said a speedier ruling was necessary "because the situation is getting worse by the day in the South China Sea".

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