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Carpio: Bring China’s war threats to UN tribunal

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Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Carpio has urged the government to raise China’s threats of war before an international tribunal.

Carpio made the call after President Rodrigo Duterte revealed he was warned by the Chinese government against drill for oil and gas in the West Philippine Sea.

The magistrate noted that the United Nations has already outlawed the use or threat of force in settling disputes between states.

“An arbitral tribunal created under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), to which China is a party, has also already ruled with finality that the Reed Bank is within the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of the Philippines and only the Philippines can exploit the natural resources within Philippine EEZ,” Carpio said.

“As a nation that under its Constitution has renounced war as an instrument of national policy, the Philippines’ recourse is to bring China’s threat of war to another UNCLOS arbitral tribunal, to secure an order directing China to comply with the ruling of the UNCLOS arbitral tribunal that declared the Reed Bank part of Philippine EEZ,” he added.

He said the Philippines can seek reparations for missed opportunities to exploit the resources in the West Philippine Sea because of China’s threat.

“The Philippines can also ask for damages for every day of delay that the Philippines is prevented by China from exploiting Philippine EEZ,” Carpio said.