South China Sea dispute: China claims support of 40 countries (Economic Times, 20 May 2016)

South China Sea dispute: China claims support of 40 countries (Economic Times, 20 May 2016)

China today claimed it had the backing of over 40 countries in its campaign to shore up support for its stand opposing arbitration by a UN tribunal to end the dispute with its neighbours over the strategic South China Sea. China, which has opposed the tribunal constituted under the UN Convention on Law of Seas (UNCLOS), has stepped up its campaign against the arbitration process. The tribunal is set to deliver its judgement on a petition by the Philippines against China over rival claims to the strategic reefs and atolls in the disputed waters of the South China Sea. Ahead of the tribunal’s judgement, China has mobilised backing from Russia, besides several countries in Asia and Africa. 26