Wed, Jul 13, 2016 - Page 1 News List

Government rejects South China Sea ruling

By Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter

Saying there is potable water and people living on Itu Aba, KMT caucus secretary-general Lin Te-fu (林德福) urged Tsai to visit the island to formally declare the nation’s sovereignty and show to the world that it is an island.

KMT Legislator Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) said Taiwan is probably “the greatest loser” in the arbitration.

“[China] has fists and countries in the South China Sea will now have an international ruling — even though the ruling is not legally binding — and the US to back their claims, but Taiwan’s island has become a rock overnight,” Chiang said.

KMT Legislator Lai Shyh-bao (賴士葆) advised the government to take “hardline measures,” such as “sending out warships immediately to the area to protect the nation’s territory.”

Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), who on January 28 visited Taiping Island in an effort to reject the Philippines’ categorization of it as a "rock" and prove to the international community that the island can sustain human habitation and economic life, posted a message on Facebook late yesterday, saying that as are all Taiwanese people, he is extremely astonished and enraged by the ruling.

The People First Party also issued a statement dismissing the ruling, saying the government must refuse to recognize any verdicts or announcements regarding South China Sea islands handed down by international courts based on “hypocritical reasons” or technicalities.

Meanwhile, the American Institute in Taiwan, reiterating its long-standing policy, said the US supports the peaceful resolution of disputes in the South China Sea, including the use of international legal mechanisms such as arbitration.

Additional reporting by Alison Hsiao

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