China's island, reef construction in South China Sea lawful, justified

Source:Xinhua Published: 2015-3-9 9:50:24

China's construction on its own islands and reefs in the South China Sea is lawful and justified, as it is merely building facilities in its own yard.

The islands and reefs which China has constructed are its inherent territory, over which China owns undisputable sovereignty. It is legitimate and justified to build major infrastructure projects on its own territory.

Besides, China's construction activities currently underway on its own islands and reefs does not violate any international law.

Unlike certain countries, China did not undertake any illegal construction activities in another country's territory, and China will not accept any criticism of its construction operations when it is merely building facilities in its own yard.

"We have every right to do things that are lawful and justified," Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Sunday at a press conference on the sidelines of the annual session of the National People's Congress, China's top legislature.

In fact, China has always been a staunch supporter and ardent defender of regional peace and stability. It gives all-out support to any move that strengthens cooperation in the South China Sea.

However, for the sake of safeguarding its sovereignty and territorial integrity, China does need self-defense.

The undergoing construction in the South China Sea neither impedes the freedom of navigation nor targets any third party. Those facilities on the islands and reefs, even being of some military nature, are reasonable and justifiable for China to use them for defense purposes.

It is worth noting that countries such as the Phillipines have built many major infrastructure projects on the islands and reefs in the South China Sea.

Therefore, it would be groundless to criticize China for building facilities there, which amounts to a double standard towards China's territory and defense activities.

If any party stubbornly regards the construction as unreasonable or illegal, it only reveals that the party concerned has little knowledge about neither history nor the international law.

In this regard, China rejects any charge by any party on the legitimacy of the infrastructure on the islands and reefs in the South China Sea.

China will continue to uphold the freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, continue to peacefully resolve disputes through direct dialog and consultation, and continue to play a constructive role in maintaining regional peace and stability.

China's policy toward its neighbors is guided by the principles of amity, sincerity, mutual benefit and inclusiveness. It aims to bring harmony, stability and prosperity to the neighborhood.

This policy has not changed, and will not in the future.

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