Legal problems include whether the Philippines had fully communicated with China before initiating the arbitration, whether the tribunal had obeyed the legal principle of prudence, whether the ruling was fair and just, whether it was reasonable to declare that Taiping/Itu Aba Island is rock, etc.
China has apparently decided to play for the longer term, leveraging its strong position on the ground while refraining from raising tension by initiating construction on Scarborough Shoal or declaring an air defense identification zone in the South China Sea.
Since the announcement of the ruling, all concerned parties are still mulling their next moves. The actions they take will decide which direction Asia heads to: spiral into a Middle Eastern type of crisis, or avoid war and head towards peace and stability.
Hong Kong will hold its sixth Legislative Council Election on September 4. The behavior of some democrats, confrontations between the Executive Branch and the LegCo, the Umbrella Movement, violent mass demonstrations, and localism have contributed to increased divisions in Hong Kong politics.
American allies like Japan have taken strong stands in support of the decision. But belatedly
some are realizing that the decision has important potentially negative implications for their own maritime claims and disputes.
While hostilities resulting from territorial disputes driven by nationalism and history continue to overshadow the relationship between Vietnam and China, a military conflict is unlikely to occur, unless decision-makers consider the resulting economic, military and political disasters to be bearable.
There is no secret that all the South China Sea claimant parties view their fishermen as important defenders of their respective claims in the disputed waters of the South China Sea. Nonetheless, the securitized fishery discourse is overblown.
South Korea is feeling the heat, not only from the heat waves of summer but also from the heated debates surrounding President Park Geun-hye’s July 8 announcement of the decision to deploy THAAD. The nation has been polarized between those saying “nay” and “aye.”
International courts and tribunals tend to decline to deal with historic argument. The logic is that sovereignty is the most sacrosanct claim vested upon every nation state, which stipulates that it need not and should not be subordinated to any authorities claiming overlordship, in whatever manifestation, above them.
President Xi Jinping’s unyielding effort in the anti-corruption campaign has implicated 800,000 Chinese officials. How and when will he consider his mission to be accomplished? David Shambaugh and Zheng Yongnian had an in-depth exchange of views at a global forum on China in Singapore.