Summary of the Secretary General of IIP at a Workshop on the South China Sea in Russia
Workshop “Legal mechanisms in settling territorial disputes from case of South China Sea” in Russia
On September 29th 2016, at The State University of Justice of The Russian Federation (under Supreme Court), the workshop “Legal mechanisms in settling territorial disputes from case of South China Sea” was hosted by the university with cooperation from the “Law of Peace” Center.
Experts from well-known Russian institutions participated in the workshop (e.g., Institute of Far Eastern Studies – Russian Academy of Sciences; Piatachkova Anastasia – Senior School of Economics; Nicolaev Vladimir – Chairman, Club of Law –Institute of Justice;…). Experts, scholars and researchers in Vietnam Studies gave presentations on the situation in the South China Sea and the ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in the arbitration of the Philippines against China. Notably, more than 100 students from the Institute participated in the workshop. Also, Russian press (Ria Novosti, Russia Today) have reported about the workshop.
Presentations at the workshop were in-depth analysis about the importance of the South China Sea; territorial disputes in the South China Sea and the legality of the Judgment of PCA. All experts and scholars expressed their support for the ruling of the PCA and urged the involved parties to resolve the territorial dispute on the basis of respect for international law and the 1982 United Nations Convention on Law of the sea.
At the workshop, Dr. Lokshin (Secretary General of The International Institute for Peace in Vienna) said: "The ruling of the PCA has put an end to this problem as acknowledging that the nine dash line is not based on any basis and without lawful effect ... Legally, despite the fact that China signed and ratified the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the sea (UNCLOS), the territorial claims of China on South China sea do not compliance provisions of UNCLOS. The occupation of China in the islands of the archipelago and the nine dash line on the basis of the 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone are completely contrary to the provisions of international law. Claim on the nine dash line of China has no legal and historical basis. All the historical evidence that Chinese scientists are based on are inconclusive and unproven. Basically, it is just based on assertions relating to discovery, conquest and dynastic ties between China and other tributaries in the region"
The scholars and the students participating in the workshop believed that the PCA ruling was based on international law, UNCLOS and thorough research on the status and history of the South China Sea. The scholars expressed their support for the legality of the decision, believed that this is an important basis to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea and the stakeholders need to seriously adhere to the decision.
The arbitration of the Philippines and the PCA ruling has created a turning point in territorial disputes in the South China Sea and can be seen as an experience and a basis for other countries in Southeast Asia to protect their sovereignty.