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Russian experts reject the legality of the nine dash line claim of China

(Workshop “Legal mechanisms in settling territorial disputes from case of South China Sea”)

At the workshop “Legal mechanisms in settling territorial disputes from case of South China Sea” which was organized at the Institute of Justice of the Russia Federation, experts and students from the institute introduced presentations and discussed on the ruling of PCA in the arbitration of the Philippines against China. The scholars and students continue to assert the nine dash line claim of China has no legal value.

Russian experts believe that the historical evidence that Chinese scientists are based on are inconclusive and unproven. Basically, it is just based on assertions relating to discovery, conquest and dynastic ties between China and other tributaries in the region

China has not gave any evidence for their claims that Chinese fishers discovered and named the islands in South China Sea, China has a long process of implementing indisputable sovereignty over the South China Sea…

Legally, despite the fact that China signed and ratified the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the sea (UNCLOS), the territorial claims of China on South China sea totally does not compliance provisions of UNCLOS. The nine dash line entirely covers the Paracels and Spratlys, meanwhile at the San Francisco Peace Conference in 1951, the Paracel Islands were returned to Vietnam which was then represented by the government of Emperor Bao Dai, and the Spratlys are put under the control of France as part of the colonial country (means South Vietnam). As a member of the UNCLOS, China has a responsibility to comply with all the conditions of the Convention and can not claim to any rights and jurisdiction that is inconsistent with the Convention. Therefore, the occupation of China in the islands of the archipelago on and the claim on the nine dash line on the basis of 200 nautical miles exclusive economic zone are completely contrary to the provisions of international law

Regarding the PCA ruling, from the begining, it seemed that China expected to the case and it refused to cooperate with the PCA. But the charter of the PCA indicates that a case could be considered even in cases where the defendant is absent. The final ruling of PCA has stated: " China’s claims to sovereign rights jurisdiction, and to “historic rights”, with respect to the maritime areas of the South China Sea encompassed by the so-called “nine-dash line” are contrary to the Convention and without lawful effect to the extent that they exceed the geographic and substantive limits of China’s maritime entitlements expressly permitted by UNCLOS".

Thus, based on the legal basis, the history and process of the PCA, it is seen that China's claim on nine-dash line has no legal value. PCA ruling has put an end to this issue as acknowledging that "the nine-dash line" is not based on any basis and without lawful effect.

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