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India sides with Philippines in South China Sea dispute

(15 October 2015)

India has announced diplomatic support for the Philippines regarding its dispute with China over islands in the South China Sea. Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj joined the secretary of foreign affairs for the Philippines, Albert Del Rosario, at the conclusion of a bilateral meeting, and announced support for the Philippines, referring to the disputed maritime region as the “West Philippine Sea” in accordance with the position of the Philippines. The joint statement added that both countries hoped for the “settlement of all disputes by peaceful means and of refraining from the threat or use of force, in accordance with universally accepted principles of international law.”

The Philippines brought a claim against China to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in 2013. The claim relates to disputed maritime boundaries in the South China Sea and was prompted by the increasing Chinese military presence in the region. Although China has boycotted the case and has argued that the terms of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) do not apply to the situation, the court is nevertheless expected to rule on the case this month.


India backs Philippines in its dispute with Beijing over claims on islands in South China Sea, 14 October 2015, by Sachin Parashar for the Times of India,