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Faculty members of the University of the Philippines College of Law (UP Law) said on Sunday May 30th that President Duterte’s remarks would boost the country’s arbitration victory trivialize against China’s claims in the West Philippine Sea.

In a televised address on May 6, Duterte said the Philippines’ arbitrary victory over China in a maritime dispute was “just a piece of paper that can be thrown in a trash can”.

In a statement, faculty members stated that the 2016 award “is a victory and pride of the Filipino people; it doesn’t belong in the garbage can. “

” Words have power, shaped by the circumstances under which they are spoken. To say China owns the WPS is a lie. China has neither legal nor physical influence on the WPS, “the statement said.

Duterte’s statements, they affirmed,” achieve nothing other than further disregard for the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the rule of law to promote. “

” Words have power, especially when they are internalized by people who seek clarity, security and guidance in the most difficult times. President Duterte’s statements are disheartening to Filipino fishermen who expect him to protect the sovereignty of the Philippines in waters that are exclusively ours under international law, “the statement said.

” They demoralize our uniformed staff who bear the heavy burden of holding the line and defending our sovereign rights and sovereignty over our seas. “

The faculty members also urged Duterte to withdraw his statements and remember his duty,” to act in the best interests of the Philippines and the Filipino people “.

Beijing’s claim to the West Philippine Sea, including the areas under the EEZ of the Philippines, was resolved in July 2016 by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague following a 2013 from Manila filed suit declared illegal.

Last week, 18 governments and law school organizations rated Dutertes “ink on-going “stance on the subject over the West Philippine Sea, where Beijing’s incursions continued.

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