The Times published a signed article by Ambassador Liu Xiaoming entitled "Stop meddling in the South China Sea" on May 4, 2016.
|2016年5月4日，英国主流大报《泰晤士报》纸质版和网络版分别刊登刘晓明大使题为《停止插手南海事务》的署名文章，全文如下：||On 4 May, the Times and its website published a signed article by Ambassador Liu Xiaoming entitled "Stop meddling in the South China Sea". The full text is as follows:|
|最近，南海问题又被炒得沸沸扬扬。美国、英国都有人在南海问题上高调发声，指责中国造成了南海局势的紧张，鼓吹所谓“捍卫航行和飞越自由”。但实际上，他们这些充满偏见和偏袒的言论恰恰加剧了南海地区的紧张形势。||The issue of the South China Sea is being ramped up by those in the US and the UK who accuse China of causing tension in the region. They proclaim the principle of free navigation and overflight but in reality their prejudice and partiality will only increase tension.|
Their suggestion that China's "hard line" position about the sea increases friction is not based on fact. We were the first to discover and name its islands and reefs and the first to govern them. Despite this, more than 40 are now illegally occupied by other countries. Our talks with neighbours to resolve our differences shows how committed we are to regional peace and stability.
China's construction on its own islands and reefs is a matter for us. These actions are not targeted at any other country. Apart from minimum defence facilities, the building works are primarily civilian in purpose.
|第二，这些人鼓吹的所谓“捍卫航行和飞越自由”实际上是伪命题。请问南海航行和飞越自由受影响了吗？事实上，每年世界各国十万多艘船只在南海地区畅通无阻，从未发生问题。我不清楚这些人所称的“航行和飞越自由”到底是什么？是各国依据国际法享有的航行自由？还是个别国家耀武扬威，可以为所欲为地将军舰开到别人家门口，将军机飞越别国领空的自由？如果是后者，我想这样的自由实质上是一种公然的挑衅和敌对行为，应当受到谴责和禁止。||The claim that there is a threat to the freedom of navigation and overflight in the sea is false. Is there a single case in which this freedom has been affected? More than 100,000 vessels pass through the sea unimpeded every year. Is the freedom of navigation that every country is entitled to really the issue? Or is it the "freedom" of certain countries to flex military muscle and moor warships on other nations' doorsteps and fly military jets over others countries' territorial airspace? If it is the latter, such "freedom" should be condemned as a flagrantly hostile act and stopped.|
|第三，这些人说中国必须接受菲律宾单方面提起的南海仲裁，否则就要给中国扣上“不遵守国际法”和“破坏基于规则的国际体系”的大帽子。这完全是颠倒黑白。中国不参与、不接受仲裁，是由于中国早在2006年就根据《联合国海洋法公约》相关规定作出了排除性声明，将主权争议和海洋划界等问题排除在强制性争端解决机制之外。要特别指出的是，包括英国在内的30多个国家都做出了类似声明。||Some appear eager to label China as "not abiding by international law" and "undermining the rule-based international system" because it rejects the arbitration imposed on it under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. China made a clear declaration in accordance with this law in 2006 to exclude compulsory arbitration on sovereign disputes and maritime delimitation. More than 30 other countries, including the UK, have made similar declarations.|
|一些域外国家声称对南海主权争议不选边站队，但同时又竭力介入南海问题。他们一方面出动飞机军舰，另一方面对中国妄加指责。这只能助长区域内少数国家的肆意妄为，使局势进一步紧张。||Some countries outside the South China Sea claim to be taking no side in sovereignty disputes, but they are actually doing all they can to get involved. The military vessels and planes they sent to the region and the accusations they throw at China only encourage certain countries in the region to behave even more recklessly, increasing the tension.|
|今年是莎士比亚逝世400周年。中英两国将举办一系列纪念活动。莎翁笔下的一些角色惯于搬弄是非、无事生非，尽管剧中人难免受骗上当，但读者和观众总能洞若观火，明辨是非。今天，谁在南海问题上搅浑水，世人也是看得一清二楚。我奉劝那些域外国家，不要再搅浑水，他们的行为已对地区稳定与世界和平构成了直接的威胁。||China and the UK have co-hosted events marking the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare's death. Some of his characters are good at stirring up enmity. But they can fool only their victims in the play, never the audience. Likewise, the world will see clearly who is making trouble in the South China Sea. These nations should desist from meddling and muddling. Such actions pose a threat to regional stability and world peace.|