The Philippines has rejected China’s criticism over Manila’s lawsuit over the territorial disputes between the two countries in the East Sea.

According to the AFP, Philippine foreign ministry spokesman Charles Jose denied Manila was taking its complaint to the UN Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague as a way to put China under foreign pressure.

"Our position is that arbitration is the durable solution," the AFP quoted Jose as saying.

Earlier, China’s Xinhua news agency on December 7 quoted China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs as saying the underlying purpose of the Philippines is not to seek peaceful settlement of the East Sea issue but rather put political pressure on China via arbitration.

The Philippines filed the lawsuit to the UN tribunal in March, asking for ruling over China's claim of most of the sea and island areas in the East Sea.

China refused to participate in the arbitration process. However, the UN tribunal gave December 15 as the deadline for China to submit arguments and evidence against the Philippines.-VNA