>> Beijing doesn't care. That's the line from Chinese officials ahead of next week's ruling on the hotly contested South China Sea. The Philippines is challenging Beijing's claim to hundreds of reefs and islands at a UN-backed tribunal in the Hague. China refuses to recognize the court's authority, saying whatever the outcome, Beijing will ignore it.
And as Reuters Greg Tureaud reports, the government's gone into propaganda overdrive to air its views.>> We've seen a flood of newspaper editorials from the Chinese state press, some very aggressive comments behind the scenes with diplomats and countries, all kinds of countries there's been a lot of meetings.
The Chinese official saying, look, don't pay too much attention to it, don't get involved if you're not immediately in the region. Then we've had journalist been courted by Chinese officials. In some cases been taken out for lunch and other cases some background briefings that are quite extensive. Basically, at every level in China has been making sure it doesn't miss a trick.
And insisting this case is essentially, from their perspective, illegal and they won't be following it.>> Just to hammer home the message, Beijing also says it'll run military exercises in the area, banning any other ships from sailing there until the ruling on July 12th.>> There's gonna be naval drills in the Paracels.
That's the island group to the north of the South China Sea. The Paracels are claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan. It would be certainly seen by Hanaway as quite provocative.>> China has already built a runway on the Paracels and parked surface-to-air missiles there. Beijing insisting it can do whatever it likes on the islands because they've always belonged to China.