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spratlys islands

China’s retaliation?

Former Secretary Raffy Alunan warned on ANC this week that China will retaliate in response to our filing of our Memorial in our  pending arbitration against China under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Citing the earlier move of China in banning the entry of our bananas into their territory, Alunan […]

ITLOS and the Scarborough Shoal

Now that Secretary Albert Del Rosario shares my view that the Scarborough Shoal dispute should be submitted to the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) for peaceful resolution, the question is: how could the tribunal exercise jurisdiction without China giving its consent to do so? The answer lies in the dispute settlement […]

Freedoms and the Spratlys

I’m still abroad as I write this column. I am currently in Bangkok, Thailand doing a training on freedom of expression for Burmese, Laotian, and Cambodian lawyers. It is a bit of an irony that while I am training members of civil society in Southeast Asia on the value of this freedom in creating a […]

Summit on KIG

Summit on Kalayaan islands The Institute of International Legal Studies of the University of the Philippines Law Center held last Monday and Tuesday a National Summit on the Kalayaan Group of Islands and the West Philippine Sea. The summit sought to define the national interest in the disputed islands, as well as to produce a […]

What cost reprieve?

FOREIGN relations is not for the weak. In promoting their national interest, states employ their best poker players as diplomats to bluff, cajole, and threaten if need be. It is not for the faint hearted. Because in asserting what is best for a country, diplomats will employ ruse, lies and gimmickry to achieve what is […]