An international tribunal in The Hague delivered a sweeping rebuke of China’s behavior in the South China Sea, including its construction of artificial islands.
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In its most significant finding, the tribunal rejected China’s argument that it enjoys historic rights over most of the South China Sea. That could give the governments of Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam more leverage in their own maritime disputes with Beijing.
The foreign secretary of the Philippines, Perfecto Yasay Jr., welcomed the ruling as “significant” and called on “all those concerned to exercise restraint and sobriety.”