China's legal experts on Thursday held a symposium on the South China Sea issue. They said the so-called tribunal is against international law and international justice.
Xiao Jianguo, deputy director-general of the Department of Boundary and Ocean Affairs of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, says the jurisdiction is far-fetched and the laws applied during the whole process are not legitimate.
"The arbitration process violates the international laws from start to the finish. The Philippine illegally initiated the arbitration; the arbitral tribunal illegally overstepped its area of authority; and the so-called 'award' was made illegally, with no binding effect. This whole thing is just a farce of the practice of international law."
He adds that with the help of the United States, the Philippines made the disputes by bypassing the provisions contained in Articles 298 of the UNCLOS and the integrity of the legal order and the international maritime order established by the UNCLOS.
In 2006 China declared that it would exclude maritime delimitation disputes from arbitration and other compulsory settlement procedures, as permitted under UNCLOS.
Other experts have also said the arbitration does not respect historical facts and distorts international laws. The tribunal trampled the spirit of rule of law.
Maritime law expert Gao Zhiguo, has served as a judge of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea under the United Nations.
He says the entire arbitration procedure has not settled the disputes on the South China Sea but only aggregated regional tension, casting shadows on regional peace and stability.
"We used to have this saying: 'Practice is the sole criterion for testing truth.' That is to say, it takes time to see if a verdict, an international regulation or rule is a good one. If the ruling did not solve the dispute between the two sides, but instead intensified their contradictions, worsened the already bad situation and brought about misunderstandings in the practice of law, then the verdict basically failed to serve its purpose."
China has made itself perfectly clear that it will not accept the ruling on July 12, and will not negotiate with the Philippines on the basis of that ruling.