Lorenzana agrees with PACAF China's planned defense zone in SCS illegalBy ANNA FELICIA BAJO,GMA News
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana agreed with United States' Pacific Air Forces Commander (PACAF) chief General Charles Brown Jr. that China's supposed plan to build an air defense zone in the South China Sea is against international rules-based order.
"Yes, I agree. First, an ADIZ [Air Defense Identification Zone] by China over the entire South China Sea would arrogate unto itself a vast sea considered to be a global commons that has been opened for millennia to all for navigation and fishing," Lorenzana said in a press statement on Thursday.
"Second, it violates the exclusive economic rights of littoral states over their EEZs under the UNCLOS of which China was a signatory," he added.
Lorenzana also stressed that a lot of countries will treat this ADIZ as "illegal and violative of international laws."
"They would continue to use these waters and airspace, and thus would further raise an already heightening tension and could result in mishaps or miscalculations at sea and in the air," he added.
Earlier reports bared that Beijing is planning to impose an Air Defense Identification Zone or ADIZ over the waters, including the Spratlys and the Paracels.
According to Brown, the ADIZ will impede freedom of navigation and overflights in the South China Sea and it will have a huge impact on all nations.
An ADIZ by China over the region, would mean almost 90 percent of marine area, where the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan have overlapping claims, would fall under the domestic control of the Asian Superpower.
Lorenzana expressed hopes that China will not proceed with its plan in order to achieve a peaceful and stable situation in the resource-rich region.
It was on July 12, 2016 when the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, Netherlands delivered a sweeping victory to the Philippines on its case against China and invalidated Beijing's massive and historical claims over the South China Sea.
Beijing has since refused to recognize the ruling. —LBG, GMA News