UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!


China Not to Build Monitoring Facility on Disputed S China Sea Shoal

Sputnik News

14:21 22.03.2017(updated 15:27 22.03.2017)

Beijing is not planning to build a monitoring facility on the disputed shoal in the South China Sea.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying denied on Wednesday reports of preparations by Beijing to build a monitoring facility on the disputed shoal in the South China Sea.

"[A plan to build the facility] does not exist at all," The Republic newspaper cited Hua as saying at a daily press briefing.

She added that the reports concerning building the environmental monitoring stations on Scarborough Shoal were mistaken.

According to the Foreign Ministry spokesperson, China placed great importance on the preservation of the South China Sea's ocean ecology, as well as on China-Philippines relations.

Last week, a Chinese top official was quoted by the official Hainan Daily newspaper as saying that China planned to build up the disputed Scarborough Shoal located approximately 600 kilometers (370 miles) southeast of China. Reacting to the reports, the Philippines requested explanations from China and started preparations to formally protest China's plans due to the violation of a ruling by a United Nations-backed international tribunal of July 2016 declaring the shoal a common fishing ground outside any country's jurisdiction.

China has been in control of the shoal since 2012 after the standoff with Philippine vessels. Additionally, China denied the access of Philippine fishermen to the traditional fishing area, postponing access until a visit by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to China happened, which took place last year.

China, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam have long contested ownership of the areas in the South China Sea, which is recognized as one of the world's busiest sea lanes and is believed to hold vast oil and gas reserves.


Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list