China firmly opposes any unilateral actions by the Philippines in South China Sea dispute

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Wu Qian

12th April 2024 – (Beijing) Chinese military spokesperson Wu Qian stated that China will not permit the Philippines to take unilateral actions in the South China Sea. This statement was made during a press briefing where Wu responded to queries about a recent joint maritime exercise involving the United States, Japan, Australia, and the Philippines.

Wu, who represents China’s Ministry of National Defence, emphasized that while nations are free to engage in defence cooperation, such activities should not be directed against any specific country nor should they disrupt regional stability. He reinforced China’s stance that its operations in the South China Sea are legitimate and lawful, criticizing actions by “certain non-regional countries” that involve deploying military assets to the area, which he described as muscle-flexing.

The spokesperson accused these countries of forming alliances against China and leveraging mutual defence agreements as a means of threatening and coercing China. He labelled these actions as irresponsible and exceedingly perilous.

Highlighting the South China Sea as a communal region for all surrounding nations, Wu advocated for resolving disputes through dialogue and consultation. He expressed strong opposition to external interference and provocations that heighten regional tensions.

Specifically targeting the Philippines, Wu criticised the nation’s approach of involving external powers in South China Sea matters. He argued that resolutions should be based on logic and law, rather than on the influence or power of involved parties.