- Chinese vice foreign minister accused the Philippines of bribing the judges of the PCA
- He said the judges were out of touch with the issue since they are all European
- He also blasted Japan, said the PCA judge who chose the arbitrators was Japanese
MANILA, Philippines – In its latest tirade against the ruling saying China’s 9-Dash Line in the West Philippine Sea is invalid, China claimed the Philippines paid off the arbitrators who heard the case to rule in its favor.
In a press conference, Chinese vice foreign minister Liu Zhenmin said the five Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) judges were out of touch with the issue since they all hailed from Europe. He also accused them of taking bribes from the Philippines.
“These judges are paid, so who’s really behind this tribunal,”, ABC News quoted him as saying. “Who was paying them? Was it the Philippines, or some other country?”
Liu also accused Japan as another antagonist; saying the PCA judge — Shunji Yanai — who selected the five arbitrators is a Japanese national.
“Shunji Yanai manipulated the tribunal and helped influence the decision,” he said.
In a separate conference, Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang affirmed Liu’s remarks. He said the PCA was paid off by the Philippines and had nothing to do with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) or the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS).
“What Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin said this morning was that the Arbitral Tribunal was not an international tribunal and had nothing to do with the UN-affiliated International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Hague,” he said. “Judges of the ICJ and the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea are paid by the UN to ensure their independence and impartiality. As for the five judges in this case, they made money, they were paid by the Philippines. I figure it necessary to make that clear.”