Philippines slams China for 'name-calling'
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines denounced China on Thursday, April 23, for resorting to "name-calling" after a Chinese state-owned tabloid called Manila a "cute little submissive" of the United States.
In a media briefing, Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) spokesman Charles Jose said: "Unable to defend both their unlawful position on the core issue, which is the 9-dash line claim, and their unilateral and aggressive reclamation activities, our northern neighbor has reduced its lack of a response to name-calling once again."
The 9-dash line is the demarcation that China uses to claim virtually the entire South China Sea, parts of which Manila calls the West Philippine Sea.
The Philippines is pursuing a historic case against China to demolish China's claim based on the 9-dash line. (READ: Philippines vs China hearing set in July)
China has rejected the case, and has bolstered its claim by building artificial islands in the South China Sea. The Philippines says China wants to jeopardize the Philippines' case by conducting reclamation activities. (READ: Philippines to ASEAN: 'Speak in one voice' vs reclamation)
Jose said China should instead "immediately accord their positions and actions" with international law and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), a non-binding document signed in 2002 to counter provocative actions in the disputed waters.
The DFA was reacting to a recent editorial by the Global Times, a Chinese tabloid with close ties to the ruling Communist Party.
In its editorial on Tuesday, April 21, the Global Times dismissed the ongoing war games between the Philippines and the United States.
"After being the 'cute little submissive' of the US all these years, Manila has gained only a handful of second-hand weapons and an empty sense of security, let alone any real enhancement of its army's combat capability," the tabloid said.
Responding to the Global Times editorial, Philippine presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda criticized China for its "insecurity." Lacierda said, "Where do we have the wherewithal to compete against China as a superpower?" – Rappler.com