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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Jul 12, 2016.
Expresses support for the July 12, 2016, ruling issued by the International Tribunal of the Law of the Sea as binding on all parties in the case brought at the request of the Republic of Philippines against the People's Republic of China concerning a dispute over the maritime jurisdiction in the South China Sea. Calls on all claimants to pursue peaceful resolution of outstanding maritime claims in the South China Sea consistent with international law.
Urges all parties to implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and to take steps toward early conclusion of a meaningful Code of Conduct.
Opposes actions in the South China Sea to change the status quo by coercion or force.
Calls on China to cease all reclamation and militarization activities in the South China Sea and end provocative actions in the East China Sea.
Reaffirms: (1) Article V of the Mutual Defense Treaty Between the United States and the Philippines, and (2) Article V of the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan.
Urges: (1) the Department of State to utilize all diplomatic channels to communicate U.S. support for freedom of navigation and overflight in the South China Sea, and (2) the Department of Defense to enforce freedom of navigation and overflight in the East and South China Seas.