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Malaysia’s South China Sea Diplomacy Will Continue

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Malaysia will maintain a diplomatic approach in its engagements with other states, including China, to maintain the South China Sea as a sea of peace, stability, and trade, according to the Foreign Ministry.

It said in a statement that this was in accordance with the provisions of the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), which included, among other things, dispute resolution through peaceful means and the avoidance of the threat or use of force.

Wisma Putra noted that this was also the approach taken in the ongoing negotiations between Asean member states and China to finalise the South China Sea Code of Conduct (COC).

“Asean member states and China are committed to negotiating a COC in accordance with international law, including the 1982 UNCLOS (the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea),” according to the statement.

Malaysia’s position on the South China Sea is consistent and unchanged, according to Wisma Putra, who also stated that the government was unequivocally and firmly committed to protecting Malaysia’s sovereignty, sovereign rights, and interests in its maritime area, as depicted by the 1979 Map.

It stated that Malaysia is adamant that issues concerning the South China Sea be resolved peacefully and constructively in accordance with universally recognised principles of international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim made the point during Prime Minister’s Question Time at Parliament on April 4 that issues relating to the South China Sea should be discussed or resolved in a peaceful manner, using existing platforms and diplomatic channels, and without compromising Malaysia’s principled position, to avoid any escalation of disputes and the threat or use of force.

During his visit to China last week, Anwar told China Daily that there is no easy solution to the overlapping territorial claims in the South China Sea, but that the problem is not insurmountable as long as there is dialogue.

Info source – Bernama

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