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BEIJING, October 30. /TASS/. China has refused to take part in hearings in the The Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration on territorial disputes in the South China Sea initiated by the Philippines and said it does not recognize the court’s jurisdiction, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Liu Zhenmin said on Friday.
"Talking about the Philippines’ decision to file claims to the arbitration court in the Hague, China’s position has remained very clear over the last two-three years, starting from 2013. China will not participate in the hearings and does not recognize [the court’s jurisdiction in the case]," he said.
On October 29 Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Hague decided to expand its jurisdiction to the South China Sea to consider the case of a territorial dispute between the Philippines and China. In January 2013 the Philippines unilaterally filed claims on the territorial dispute with China to the court.
Beijing has for decades been involved in a dispute with many countries in the region over the territorial jurisdiction of a number of islands in the South China Sea, where significant reserves of hydrocarbons have been found. This refers, above all, to the Xisha archipelago (the Paracel Islands), the Nansha Islands (the Spratly Islands) and Huangyan Island. Other countries involved in the dispute are Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia and the Philippines. As of the end of 2013, China has been engaged in large-scale hydro-engineering and construction work on the expansion and development of the territories under its control.