China and ASEAN members have the capability and wisdom to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea: Wang Yi
Published: Aug 12, 2023 01:31 PM
US in South China Sea Illustration:Liu Rui/GT

US in South China Sea Illustration:Liu Rui/GT

Recently, the US has used the Ren'ai Jiao dispute to stir up trouble, incite confrontation between China and the Philippines, and undermine peace and tranquility in the South China Sea to serve its own geopolitical strategy. During his visit to Singapore and Malaysia, Senior Chinese diplomat Wang Yi expressed China's hope that countries in the region will remain vigilant against those behind the scenes and take the leading role in maintaining peace and stability in the South China Sea into their own hands, the Chinese Foreign Ministry issued on Saturday.

Over the years, thanks to the joint efforts of China and ASEAN members, the situation in the South China Sea has generally remained stable, which has also provided a sound environment for their respective development, said Wang, member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Experts believe that Wang's speech not only shows the real intention behind the hype of the US and other Western countries on the issue, but also conveys the willingness of dialogue to the Philippines.

Meeting with the foreign ministers of Singapore and Malaysia to state China's position not only allowed ASEAN members to hear China's voice and position without being provoked by the US, but also took this opportunity for the Philippines to recognize China's position and meet China halfway, Li Kaisheng, vice president of Shanghai Institutes for International Studies, told the Global Times on Saturday.

Although the Philippines is more influenced by the US, other ASEAN members are unlikely to be affected, Li said.

As China and the Philippines have disputed the Philippines' illegal transportation of construction supplies to China's Ren'ai Jiao, in order to incite Manila to further provoke China to ramp up the tension, several Western countries led by the US have expressed backing for the Philippines' illegal acts in the South China Sea while condemning China's legitimate, restrained and professional responses. 

The actions taken by China were reasonable, legal, professional, and in accordance with regulations. China will continue to take necessary measures to firmly safeguard its national sovereignty and calls on the Philippines to abide by its commitments and immediately cease all provocative actions, said the Chinese Defense Ministry spokesperson.

China has repeatedly expressed its willingness to properly handle differences with the Philippines through bilateral dialogue, Wang said. It is hoped that the Philippine side will abide by the consensus reached in the past, cherish the mutual trust accumulated from the improvement of bilateral relations, and work with China to meet each other halfway as soon as possible to seek effective ways to manage the maritime situation.

China is ready to work with ASEAN members to accelerate consultations on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea and strive for an early conclusion of regional rules that are effective, substantive and consistent with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Wang stressed. It is believed that China and ASEAN members have the capability and wisdom to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea and build a  common home, Wang noted.

Global Times