Saturday, April 17, 2021
 

PH to China: ‘Get out’ of Julian Felipe Reef

 

Latest Stories

Raul Castro resigns as Communist chief, ending era in Cuba

HAVANA: Raul Castro said Friday he is stepping down as head of Cuba’s Communist Party, ending an era of...

Mandaue routs Tabogon; Dumaguete bags 1st Super Cup win

CEBU: KCS Computer Specialist-Mandaue City made a show of force here and dumped the Tabogon Voyagers, 86-53, in the 2021 Chooks-to-Go Pilipinas...

Russia to expel 10 US diplomats in response to Washington

MOSCOW: Russia on Friday responded to a barrage of new US sanctions by saying it would expel 10 US...

‘No sufficient data’ on vaccines vs Covid-19 – Duque

A top official of the Department of Health (DoH) said on Friday there is "no sufficient evidence" which indicates how...

Boat carrying fuel explodes in Zamboanga

ZAMBOANGA CITY: A wooden boat loaded with 200 barrels of gasoline exploded late Friday at a wharf in the...

THE Department of National Defense (DND) on Saturday reiterated the Philippines’ call for the 44 remaining Chinese vessels in the Julian Felipe Reef  to leave.

“The Chinese Ambassador [Huang Xilian] has a lot of explaining to do. As of our latest maritime and aerial surveillance, there are still 44 Chinese vessels that are in Julian Felipe Reef,” said Lorenzana in a statement.

This satellite image provided by Maxar Technologies shows Chinese vessels in the Whitsun Reef located in the disputed South China Sea. Tuesday, March 23, 2021. The United States said Tuesday it’s backing the Philippines in a new standoff with Beijing in the disputed South China Sea, where Manila has asked a Chinese fishing flotilla to leave a reef. China ignored the call, insisting it owns the offshore territory. (©2021 Maxar Technologies via AP)

“I am no fool. The weather has been good so far, so they have no other reason to stay there. These vessels should be on their way out. Umalis na kayo diyan (Get out of there),” he added.

Lorenzana issued the statement a day after US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, in a phone call to his counterpart Hermogenes Esperon Jr., assured him that the US would apply its Mutual Defense Treaty with the Philippines in the reef, which is well within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone or EEZ.

Emily Horne, spokesman of the US National Security Council, said Sullivan emphasized that the US “stands with our Philippine allies in upholding the rules-based international maritime order.”

Sullivan “reaffirmed the applicability of the US-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty in the South China Sea,” Horne said in a statement.

Under the 70-year-old treaty, the Philippines and US are bound to support each when either one is attacked by an external force.

 

The Philippines has filed a diplomatic protest against the presence of the Chinese ships.

“We, again, reiterate our demand for the Chinese to leave our sovereign territories and abide by international law.”

Meanwhile, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) expressed concern over the continued presence of the Chinese vessels in the Julian Felipe Reef, which is an integral part of the Pagkakaisa Banks.

The AFP said it joins the DND in calling out the Chinese incursions and would continuously monitor the West Philippine Sea through regular air and maritime sovereignty patrols apart from the 24/7 land-based monitoring stations.

Ecological disaster

The Agham-Advocates of Science and Technology for the People, a national group of Science and Technology professionals, in a statement posted on Facebook on April 2, said territorial disputes could lead to the collapse of the maritime industry.

“China’s illegal encroachment in the West Philippine Sea is counterproductive to national and global efforts in curbing illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. In fact, global fisheries experts already warned of possible fisheries collapse if territorial disputes continue,” said the group.

Agham said China’s activities would also lead to a loss in livelihood of about 627,000 Filipino fisherfolk. Filipino marine scientists conducting studies in the West Philippine Sea may also be subjected to harassment, thereby impeding work vital to fisheries management.

“China’s rampant demonstration of their dominance in the West Philippine Sea is also sending a strong message that they will not allow our country to develop our own natural resources within our territorial rights. Clearly, this is a violation of the country’s integrity of our national territory,” the group added.


 
 

Weather

Today's Front Page

TRY OUR DIGITAL EDITION
FREE FOR 30 DAYS

ALREADY A SUBSCRIBER?