China 'highly values' peace, stability in South China Sea

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"China highly values the peace and stability in the South China Sea" and has "always taken a constructive and responsible approach in addressing the issue," a senior Chinese diplomat said Wednesday.

Wu Haitao, the deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, said this at the 71st UN General Assembly on Oceans and the Law of the Sea.

Thanks to the joint efforts of China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, the situation in the South China Sea is developing in a positive direction and has been brought back to the right track of dialogues and consultations, he noted.

"We hope that states concerned will work together with China to seek a solution to the dispute through negotiations and consultations and maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea," Wu said.

"The so-called 'Arbitration on the South China Sea' was null and void with no binding power whatsoever," he said.

"China does not accept it, did not participate in it and does not recognize it to uphold the international rule of law. That page of the so-called 'arbitration' has been turned over," he said.

China will, as always, act as a defender of the rule of the international maritime law, a builder of a harmonious maritime order and a promoter of the sustainable marine development, he said.

"We look forward to continuing to strengthen cooperation with all countries in order to further promote the protection and sustainable use of the oceans and seas."

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