The Philippines showed its appreciation for the recent statement made by the Group of 7 (G7) leaders, who condemned China’s aggressive actions in the South China Sea. The G7 consists of Italy, Germany, United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France, and Japan. This group of industrialized nations expressed their commitment to maintaining a rules-based international order and the rule of law globally.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in the Philippines emphasized the importance of promoting a stable and secure Indo-Pacific region, free from actions that threaten international security and stability. The Philippines called on China to refrain from distorting facts, making dangerous moves, and harassing Filipino vessels and crew members.

In response to the G7’s statement, China criticized the group, accusing them of arrogance, prejudice, and spreading falsehoods. Despite China’s opposition, the G7 leaders reaffirmed their support for the 2016 Arbitral Award, which invalidated China’s expansive claims in the South China Sea.

The G7 leaders expressed strong opposition to any unilateral attempts by China to change the status quo in the region through force or coercion. They also condemned China’s use of coast guard and maritime militia in the South China Sea, as well as its interference with freedom of navigation for other countries.

China’s recent actions in the South China Sea have raised concerns among neighboring countries, including the Philippines. Incidents of aggression, such as the use of water cannons against Philippine vessels and the installation of barriers at the Scarborough Shoal, have escalated tensions in the region.

The Philippines welcomed the G7’s support in calling for China to cease its illegal activities, particularly those involving the coast guard and maritime militia. China’s enforcement of a new regulation allowing the detention of foreign “trespassers” in the South China Sea has been met with criticism from Philippine officials, who view it as a violation of international law.

Manila continues to assert its sovereignty over parts of the South China Sea, known as the West Philippine Sea, in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). The Philippines values the G7’s recognition of UNCLOS as a universal and unified legal framework for maritime disputes.

Overall, the Philippines stands in solidarity with the G7 in upholding international law and promoting peace and stability in the South China Sea. The country hopes that China will engage in constructive dialogue and peaceful conflict resolution to de-escalate tensions in the region.