Caution: peacefully and diplomatically

The Philippines must now “peacefully and most of all diplomatically assert its power of control” over areas in the West Philippine Sea falling under its exclusive economic zone according to a court ruling Tuesday july 12 that China’s actions in the area violate international law.

The decision by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague “validates the Philippine claim of jurisdiction over certain shoals, reefs and outcrops therefore, all those who adhere to the rule of law must respect the verdict of a recognized international court of justice.

Not just China, but other States as well should respect such objective and reasonable ruling.The ruling now is that China’s historical claims to 90 percent of the area, also known as the South China Sea, had no legal basis nor justification.

We Filpinos have every reason to be jubilant over the ruling, which further determined that all of the land in the Spratly Islands chain are rocks, and are not islands.

The genuine exercise of Philippine sovereignty over the West Philippine Sea would bring more development and progress to our country and people. But in fairness to China who spent billions to what claims as legitimate actions, we ask, what took us so long to exert our jurisdiction, if china did not initiate a massive claim? In short why was the Philippines sleeping on its rights all along? Why cry wolf just now?

Incoming Senate President Koko Pimentel, who is also the president of the administration party PDP Laban, said the Philippines would continue to “respect the right and freedom of innocent passage and navigation of all vessels and airplanes in and over the area.”

This is “pursuant to all treaty obligations sanctioned by the United Nations as well as all binding bilateral agreements with other nations.”

Let us be magnanimous in victory. We the Philippines who are just a speck compared to other nations must be humble enough in victory and be conscious of our limitations and not dream of owning kingdom come even if we cannot even afford to do it alone and by ourselves.

Finally, let us not antagonize the loser because she will just become harder and more unreasonable. The more it will be difficult for us to exercise our victory if we do not share it with others. That should be the spirit. And in so doing, we will make friends, not enemies.

HTML Comment Box is loading comments...