Arbitral Tribunal upholds UNCLOS, Rejects China's “9-Dash-Line” and Claims to “Historic Rights” over the South China Sea
On November 4, 2002, the ASEAN-China Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, was signed in Phnom Penh, the capital of the Kingdom of Cambodia. The Declaration recognized “the need to promote a peaceful, friendly and harmonious environment in the South China Sea between ASEAN and China for the enhancement of peace, stability, economic growth and prosperity in the region”, and the desire “to enhance favourable conditions for a peaceful and durable solution of differences and disputes among countries concerned”.
In particular, the Declaration provided as follows :
“3. The Parties reaffirm their respect for and commitment to the freedom of navigation in and overflight above the South China Sea