The top diplomats of Japan and the Philippines have called on China to avoid intimidation and follow the rule of law in disputed waters where Beijing is defying an arbitration ruling that invalidated its vast territorial claims.

Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. and his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida made the call Thursday after meeting in Davao, where they discussed ways to enhance ties and their countries' territorial disputes with China.

Yasay urged China to make sure that maritime order and security and the rule of law are "completely and uncompromisingly" respected.

Referring to China, he says Japan and the Philippines have had the same experience "with respect to certain actions that use force (and) intimidation."

Kishida says maritime order based on the rule of law is indispensable for regional stability.