China opposes US resolution on maritime disputes

Updated: 2013-08-01 21:38


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BEIJING - China "strongly" opposes a US Senate resolution on disputes in the East China Sea and South China Sea, a Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said Thursday.

Spokeswoman Hua Chunying said the resolution places blame on the Chinese side without regard for history and fact, "sending the wrong message."

The US Senate approved the resolution on Monday, "reaffirming the strong support of the United States for the peaceful resolution of territorial, sovereignty and jurisdictional disputes in the Asia-Pacific maritime domains."

The resolution puts pressure on China in regards to territorial disputes in the East China Sea and South China Sea.

The Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea, as well as Huangyan Island in the South China Sea, are both part of China's territory and have been since ancient times. Due to historical factors, however, some of China's neighbors have disputed China's ownership of the islands.

Relations between China and Japan soured following the Japanese government's unilateral move to "nationalize" part of the Diaoyu Islands last September.

In the South China Sea, a Philippine warship entered waters off Huangyan Island with "protecting sovereignty" as an excuse to harass Chinese fishermen who were taking shelter in a lagoon during a storm in April 2012.

The Philippines also recently sent fresh troops and supplies to the Ren'ai Reef, where it grounded a warship illegally in 1999. Despite China's repeated requests that it tow the ship, the Philippines has failed to honor its commitment to do so, citing "technical problems."

However, Manila accused China of "encroaching on its territory" after Chinese maritime surveillance ships patrolled waters near the Ren'ai Reef.

The Chinese side is strongly opposed to the US Senate resolution and "has lodged solemn representations to the US side," Hua said.

"We urge relevant US senators to respect the facts and correct their mistakes so as not to make matters and the regional situation more complicated," she added.