US rejects China’s excessive maritime claims – US State Secretary

The United States rejects China’s excessive maritime claims in the South China Sea, new US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken said in a phone conversation with Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin, Jr. on January 27.

The newly confirmed US Secretary “underscored that the United States rejects China’s maritime claims in the South China Sea to the extent they exceed the maritime zones that China is permitted to claim under international law as reflected in the 1982 Law of the Sea Convention,” the US Stated Department said.

“Secretary Blinken pledged to stand with Southeast Asian claimants in the face of PRC pressure,” it added.

Blinken and Locsin also committed to continue building upon a relationship founded on shared strategic interests and history, democratic values, and strong people-to-people ties.

“Secretary Blinken stressed the importance of the Mutual Defense Treaty for the security of both nations, and its clear application to armed attacks against the Philippine armed forces, public vessels, or aircraft in the Pacific, which includes the South China Sea,” the US department said.