Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam also have territorial claims in the busy waters, which are among the world’s busiest. The Philippines, however, has claimed that the case is predominately about maritime boundaries, pointing specifically at the rights of Filipino fisherman, among other things, in the disputed territory. A memorandum is called a memorial in global law.
The third part, entitled “Kalayaan: Paninindigan para sa Karapatan”, delves on the legal aspects of the Philippines’ arbitration case against China.
If the Netherlands-based court decides it has jurisdiction, Jose said the Philippines would be asked to argue the merits of its case in another round of hearings.
“Once the jurisdiction is won by the Philippines, and the [United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea] tribunal says it has jurisdiction, then we practically know the tribunal will strike down the 9-dash line”, Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio of the Philippine Supreme Court told Rappler in an exclusive interview.
He admitted the country’s case is unique since it will be the first to be lodged before the tribunal with only one party in attendance.
A DAY before the oral argument on the Philippines’ arbitration case against China, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has again called on the Asian economic giant to join them in finding a rules-based resolution to the dispute.
The executive branch will be represented by Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa, Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Undersecretary for the Security Cluster Emmanuel Bautista, and deputy presidential spokeswoman Abigail Valte. Last December, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs published a position paper explaining why Beijing was rejected Manila’s claims to the United Nations, even calling moves made by the Philippines to resort to arbitration as bad practice.
Solicitor General Florin Hilbay will present the country’s case, together with lawyer Paul Reichler from the USA firm Foley Hoag.
As the Philippines’ lead counsel before the global Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (Itlos), Reichler previously stated that while the global tribunal has no police force to “make the defendant comply with the order”, losing parties comply “at least 95%” of the time.
Roque said the UNCLOS dispute settlement procedure is limited to “interpretation and application of the UNCLOS”.
Coloma said the three branches of government are united in defending the country’s sovereignty. The Philippines is further asking the tribunal if China can appropriate low-tide elevations (LTEs), like Mischief Reef and Subi Reef, within the Philippines’ EEZ. “This is not a case about land; this is a case about the maritime waters which is perfectly under UNCLOS”.
He added: “Our door for bilateral consultation and negotiation is still open and will be open forever”. Members are Judge Jean-Pierre Cot of France, Judge Stanislaw Pawlak of Poland, Professor Alfred Soons of the Netherlands, and Judge Rüdiger Wolfrum of Germany.