Australia, US and Japan has urged China on Tuesday to recognise the ruling by The Hague's Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in favour of the Philippines over its South China Sea row with Beijing.
In a joint statement, US Secretary of State John Kerry, and his Japanese and Australian counterparts, Fumio Kishide and Julie Bishop, who are set to attend multilateral meetings of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) here on Tuesday, expressed their "strong support for the rule of law and called on China and the Philippines to abide by the Arbitral Tribunal's Award of July 12 in the Philippines-China arbitration, which is final and legally binding on both parties," EFE news reported.
The three ministers, after a meeting in Laos' capital city, defended freedom of navigation and over flight in the South China Sea and evaluated the construction of outposts and their use for military purposes in the area.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his ASEAN counterparts had agreed in a joint statement on Monday to sort out disputes through talks and sign as soon as possible a code of conduct to prevent conflicts.
In a press conference after the meeting, Wang reiterated China's rejection of the decision of The Hague court and accused the court of acting under the influence of foreign forces.
Wang added that the Asean ministers had assured him that the bloc will not take sides in the arbitration despite the Philippines being one of its founding members.