Verso una soluzione giuridica delle controversie nel Mar Cinese Meridionale? Il caso Filippine c. Cina

No. 52 – September 2015Il caso Filippine c. Cina
Author: Massimiliano Porto
Language: Italian
South China Sea
Spratly Islands
Scarborough Shoal
Nine-dash lines

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On 22 January 2013, an arbitral procedure was commenced with a notification served by the Philippines to China with respect to the dispute with China over the maritime jurisdiction of the Philippines in the South China Sea (SCS). The dispute between the Philippines and China in SCS is one of a number of disputes among the coastal States that claim sovereignty and jurisdiction on its maritime features and on its maritime areas. Usually, these disputes have been always dealt bilaterally by the claiming States, also because of the will of China, the main claimant of the SCS. The growing worry of the Philippines about the increase in Chinese activities in SCS that put Philippine rights and entitlements in jeopardy, and its consequent dissatisfaction with the progress of bilateral negotiations, led the Philippines to submit the dispute to an Arbitral Tribunal under Annex VII to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. The decision of the tribunal, whose proceeding the Chinese Government rejected, could have important consequences not only for the Philippines and China but for all the coastal States and for the stability of the SCS. Moreover, this case also represents a challenge to the international law because if an eventual decision of the arbitral tribunal in favor of the Philippines will not be implemented by China, the fairness of the international law to settle the disputes could be shattered.