Prof. Hilbay responds to journalists' comments on decisions he made as Solicitor General

Professor Florin Hilbay throws light on some muddled reportage on aspects of the legal strategy used in the Philippines’ case against China over the West Philippine Sea. In the “Response to Ms. Hofileña and Ms. Vitug,” Professor Hilbay, who was part of the Philippine legal team as the country’s Solicitor General from June 2015 to June 2016, explains the technical issues, specifically regarding Itu Aba in the Spratley chain of islands.

Prof. Hilbay’s statement was in reaction to an article written by Rappler editors Chay Hofileña and Marites Dañguilan Vitug and published on July 20, 2016, that claimed that the former Solicitor General’s move to exclude Itu Aba from the country’s claims was “a miscalculation, if not a tactical error.”

Throughout the hearing before Permanent Court of Arbitration, the media continually reported on a perceived disagreement among the legal team involving arguments concerning Itu Aba. Professor Hilbay’s paper highlights the misinformation that can arise when media persons “who do not have official documents or had no direct and personal knowledge of events," report on and draw mixed-up conclusions.

Prof. Hilbay’s full statement can be accessed at:

Rappler article thread on Prof. Hilbay: