But the tribunal courteously rebuffed the approach – By Alfredo C. Robles, Jr. –
Permanent-Court-of-Arbitration-logoChina has intensified its diplomatic campaign against the arbitration.
In the last few months China has even targeted the members of the Tribunal, accusing them of “fail[ing] to be impartial” and of being “careless” and “irresponsible.
Thankfully we do not owe this extraordinary outburst to a member of the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s Protocol Department but to a deputy director-general of the Ministry’s Department of Boundary and Ocean Affairs. Although courtesy was probably far from the mind of Xiao Jianguo, he should have remembered that modicum of explanation for such grave accusations was necessary.
Regrettably the only justification provided in the press release was that “many loopholes could be found in its award”, a statement followed by a repetition of the same arguments that China has been trotting out on any and every occasion.
Lately, China has even taken to describing the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) as a “law-abusing” tribunal whose ruling would be “a piece of trash paper”.