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On April 11, a Philippines warship entered waters off Huangyan Island in the South China Sea and cited "protecting sovereignty" as an excuse to harass Chinese fishermen who were taking shelter from a storm in the lagoon.

A standoff ensued after two Chinese surveillance ships arrived in the waters to prevent the arrest of the Chinese fishermen. The Chinese government has made strong representations to the Philippines on this matter. [Detail]

          Timeline of Chinese-Philippine standoff

On April 10, Standoff erupted as Philippine Naval harassed 12 Chinese fishermen  [Detail]

On April 13, All Chinese fishing boats left Huangyan Island but standoff continued [Detail]

On April 15, One of 12 harassed Chinese fishing boats returned to port [Detail]

On April 20, Chinese patrol ship reached waters off Huangyan Island [Detail]

On April 22, China withdrew two law enforcement vessels [Detail]

On April 23, China denounced Philippines' call for other countries to show stance [Detail]

On April 24, China made "solemn representations" to Philippines [Detail]

On April 26, Chinese army vowed to safeguard national marine rights [Detail]

On May 2, US vows to assist Philippine Navy, not to interfere in S. China Sea dispute  [Detail]

      Philippines claimed its sovereignty over Huangyan Island

Philippine president Aquino stressed the country's sovereignty over the Huangyan Island, according to the report from the

Aquino said that the Philippines will continue making dialogue with China to resolve the disputes between the two countries. He also quotoed Churchill saying "To jaw-jaw is always better than to war-war".
         China reiterates that the Huangyan Island is an integral part of China
China reiterates that the Huangyan Island is an integral part of China. China has indisputable sovereignty over the Island. The Philippine side's so-called "law-enforcement" in the waters off the Huangyang Island is a violation of China's sovereignty. It goes against the two countries' consensus to maintain peace and stability of the South China Sea and not to complicate or magnify the situation.

China urge the Philippine side to bear in mind China-Philippines friendship, and peace and stability of the South China Sea, do not make new disturbances and work with China to create sound conditions for the sound and steady development of bilateral relations. [Detail]
            External interferences further complicates South China Sea’s Situation
The US-led Western forces seek to agitate hostility against China through the latest friction. Countries like Vietnam and Japan, which have maritime territorial disputes with China, are also watching closely, trying to explore collective actions against this rising power. [Detail]

These Western government officials and media ignored the fact and deliberately linked the upgrade of conflicts with the rise of China to create conflicts between China and its neighboring countries. [Detail]

The United States has increased its military presence in the Philippines as it shifts its strategic focus to the Asia-Pacific region. A security adviser at a British Pacific strategies and assessment agency said that as it is unable to fight against China on its own, the Philippines has reopened its ports and military bases to the U.S. military 20 years after it asked U.S. troops to leave the country. It wants to contain China’s influence in the region and pursue interests in the South China Sea by inviting the United States to intervene to magnify and internationalize the issue. [Detail]
          Chinese view: the more Philippines gets, the more it wants
Philippines benefits a lot from China and peaceful South China Sea

Actually, no any large-scale war happened in the South China Sea area over the years. The economy of the area has entered the most active period in history because it shared the benefits from China's peaceful rise. About a half of goods in the world are transported through the South China Sea, and East Asia has become the locomotive of the world economy.

Even the Philippines also share a lot of benefits from China's peaceful development over these years. The calm and peaceful South China Sea created well atmosphere for them to exploit oil and gas resources and consider how they can grab more from China's territorial waters. [Detail]

China will not continue to tolerate Philippine insatiable action

The appearance of Chinese ocean surveillance ship sent a clear signal that China will not continue to tolerate the insatiable action. To return to the "Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea" is the only right choice.

Any country that carries out vexatious acts is doomed to be hit hard no matter if it is weak, no matter how pitiful it pretends to be. [Detail]

          Suggestions for China to contend with this issue
China first needs cool-headedness
Facing this complex dispute, China first needs to be calm. A hasty decision may cause more troubles. Addressing the South China Sea issue is set to be a long and arduous process. This is already a geopolitical reality that China faces. China should try to seize more initiative in this process, rather than being led by other regional players. [Detail]
Though unlikely, preparation for a war is needed

China should be prepared to engage in a small-scale war at sea with the Philippines. Once the war erupts, China must take resolute action and deliver a clear message to the outside world that it does not want a war, but definitely has no fear of it. Nevertheless, such a war cannot put the South China Sea issue to an end. [Detail]

Both economic and political means should be taken

Manila's arrogance is becoming the most evident challenge China faces in the South China Sea. China needs to come up with all kinds of economic and political counter measures, so as to make sure that Manila suffers much more than it gains and the role it plays is not at all appealing to other Asian countries. [Detail]

          Editor's Note
One of the important missions of China for its peaceful development is the find ways to resolve such complex problems as the South China Sea issue, which concerns not only the boundary demarcation but also a safe political pattern in the future. Dealing with the issue, China will be able to stand up steadily to assume the heavy responsibility of ensuring long-term stability and peace in Asia.
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