A joint statement on the 10th anniversary of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) was adopted at the end of the ASEAN-China Summit convened in Cambodia Monday.
The leaders affirmed that the DOC signed in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, in 2002 is a milestone document which embodies the collective commitment of ASEAN member states and China to promote peace, stability and mutual trust in the South China Sea.
Noting the progress in the implementation of agreed joint cooperative projects under the DOC following the conclusion of the guidelines for the implementation of the DOC in July 2011, ASEAN and Chinese leaders reiterated their mutual respect for each other's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity in accordance with international law and the principle of non- interference in the internal affairs of other states.
"We agreed to continue to uphold the spirit and principles of the DOC to contribute to the promotion of peace, friendship, mutual trust, confidence and cooperation between and among ASEAN member states and China," the joint statement said.
On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of DOC, ASEAN and Chinese leaders vowed to continue to "enhance maritime security and to encourage the parties concerned to resolve territorial and jurisdictional disputes by peaceful means, without resorting to the threat or use of force, through friendly consultations and negotiations by sovereign states directly concerned, in accordance with universally recognized principles of international law," it read.
It was also agreed that the momentum of dialogue and consultation should be kept to enhance trust, confidence and cooperation among ASEAN nations and China in working towards the adoption of a code of conduct in the South China Sea on the basis of consensus.
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