Australia Joins List of Nations Rejecting China’s Maritime Claims in South China Sea

Sandra Loyd

Australia has actually sent out a diplomatic note to the United Nations rejecting China’s extensive maritime claims in the South China Sea, signing up with the growing list of nations that have actually pressed back versus Beijing’s anticipation of “historic rights” to the challenged waters.

The note was sent out to the UN on Thursday and posted to the Commission on the Limitations of the Continental Rack’s website on Friday early morning.

Australia is the most recent in a little however emerging chorus of nations that are referring to as prohibited China’s position that it holds financial and maritime rights to almost all of the South ChinaSea China’s extensive claims overlap those of 5 of its next-door neighbors.

Australia’s note follows comparable diplomatic submissions from the United States, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

“The Australian Government rejects any claims by China that are inconsistent with the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS),” the note states

Particularly, Australia turns down China’s persistence on holding “historic rights” to the South China Sea, the illustration of “baselines” to link its occupied rocks in the Paracel and Spratly island chains, and China’s claim to maritime zones around entirely immersed features and around features just noticeable at low-tide conditions.

That totals up to a thorough rebuke of the legal basis of China’s maritime claims and aligns Australia with the brand-new, harder U.S. position on the South China Sea announced two weeks ago

Beijing has actually bristled at its viewed encirclement by the U.S., its allies and partner nations in current weeks. In addition to the flurry of diplomatic notes challenging China’s extensive claims, the U.S. has actually led a series of prominent military drills in the South China Sea.

Australia signed up with U.S. attack aircraft carrier for workouts this month, most recently in the Philippine Sea on July 19, together with Japan.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Thursday spoke of structure “a new alliance of democracies” to challenge China, in a speech that was unsparing in its criticism of China’s federal government as relations in between the 2 world powers spiral downward.

That drew a sharp action from China’s leading diplomat.

“Some anti-China forces in the US lately have been deliberately creating ideological opposition, blatantly coercing other countries to pick sides and confronting China for U.S.’ self-interests,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi informed his German equivalent according to China’s readout of the call

“But any country with conscience and independent spirit will not play a part in such actions,” he stated.

Like the United States and Japan, Australia does not declare area in the South ChinaSea The federal governments that do are Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam.

In its note to the U.N., Australia points out a 2016 award by The Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration to discuss why China’s claims aren’t supported by international law. That echoes the earlier diplomatic notes sent out by Indonesia, the Philippines and the U.S.

The 2016 tribunal intended to settle a conflict in between the Philippines and China over who held legal claims to the Spratly chain of reefs and rocks in the southern part of the South ChinaSea That tribunal eventually overruled essentially every basis China advanced to validate its claims.

Australia contacted China to acknowledge the tribunal’s decision and follow it– something that China, which did not take part in the tribunal’s procedures, has actually declined to do.

“The rationale put forward by China as an explanation of why the Arbitral Award is not binding on China is not supported by international law,” Australia’s note checks out. “Pursuant to Article 296 and Article 11 of Annex VII of UNCLOS the Tribunal’s decision is final and binding on both parties to the dispute.”

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