CAIRO, June 23 (Xinhua) -- The South China Sea issue should be solved peacefully without actions that would escalate tensions, Ahmed Abu Zaid, spokesperson of Egypt's Foreign Ministry said on Thursday. Egypt supports the stance of a number of Arab nations concerning China's position on the South China Sea issue, Abu Zaid said in an interview with Xinhua. At the seventh Ministerial Meeting of the China-Arab Cooperation Forum held in Doha, a number of Middle Eastern nations announced in the Doha Declaration that they support a peaceful settlement of territorial and maritime disputes between China and other Asia-Pacific countries through consultation. "We always call for peaceful dialogue to solve disputes," he stressed. "Any tension in the region of South China Sea worries Egypt as well as the international community," he said. Countries bordering this area should maintain peaceful and positive relationships, Abu Zaid said, wishing that the dispute would soon be solved. The Philippines filed unilaterally in 2013 an arbitration case against China over the issue in the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in The Hague, the Netherlands, violating an agreement it reached with China in the mid-1990s on settling their disputes through negotiation. China has excluded maritime delimitation from compulsory arbitration in a declaration it made in 2006 in accordance with Article 298 of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and has made it clear it will not accept or get involved in those proceedings. Enditem
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