Defending Philippine Sovereign Rights in the West Philippine Sea
ABOUT THE COURSE
In this course, Justice Antonio T. Carpio will discuss the five major issues that the Philippines raised in the South China Sea arbitration:
- China’s claim to historic rights beyond its territorial sea is contrary to UNCLOS. The nine-dashed line has no legal basis and cannot generate any maritime entitlement (territorial sea, exclusive economic zone, or extended continental shelf).
- No geologic feature in the Spratlys is capable of human habitation or economic life of its own so as to generate a 200 NM EEZ that can overlap with Palawan’s EEZ.
- The Arbitral Tribunal has jurisdiction to rule on the maritime entitlement and status (whether LTE or High-Tide Elevation) of geologic features. These are not sovereignty disputes. A claim to an EEZ is not a claim to sovereignty because a state cannot exercise sovereignty over its EEZ, which is a maritime entitlement first created and governed by UNCLOS. The status of an LTE beyond the territorial sea cannot involve any sovereignty dispute because such LTE is incapable of sovereign ownership. Moreover, maritime entitlement is separate from sea boundary delimitation because a geologic feature’s maritime entitlements do not always or necessarily overlap with the maritime entitlements of another state.
- Scarborough Shoal is a rock above water at high tide and is entitled only to a 12 NM territorial sea. Filipino fishermen have traditional fishing rights in the territorial sea of Scarborough Shoal, regardless of which state exercises sovereignty over the shoal.
The course will also highlight what the Filipino people should do given this situation and why war is never an option.
Module 1: South China Sea and Its Geologic Features
Module 2: Root Cause of the South China Sea Dispute
Module 3: Why China’s “Zheng He in Manila” Narrative Is Totally False
Module 4: How the Arbitral Tribunal Ruled on Whether an Island in the Spratlys
Module 5: Fallacy of China’s Historic Claim Rights
Module 6: How China Extended Its Southernmost Territory
Module 7: What We Won in Our Arbitral Case Against China
JUSTICE ANTONIO T. CARPIO (Ret.)
Senior Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the Philippines