State-run news website Global Times said the order transferring the Chinese coast guard leadership from civilian authorities to the country’s military took effect on July 1.
Chinese coast guard placed under military command
Pia Lee-Brago (The Philippine Star) - July 3, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — China’s coast guard is now under military command.

State-run news website Global Times said the order transferring the Chinese coast guard leadership from civilian authorities to the country’s military took effect on July 1.

The report said a marine police corps under the Chinese People’s Armed Police Force would be established to take charge of law enforcement at sea.

Xinhua news agency said the soon-to-be-formed body would guard China’s marine rights.

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, China’s top legislature, adopted the new setup last June 22. The State Oceanic Administration used to supervise the coast guard.

Song Zhongping, a military expert and TV commentator, said the change will put the coast guard under the direct administration of China’s Central Military Commission (CMC) and enable the China Coast Guard (CCG) to be more involved in military drills and daily exercises with the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Navy.

He said the coast guard can cooperate more efficiently with the PLA Navy when involved in emergencies and war.

Song said coast guard ships would be armed with more powerful small diameter cannons instead of water cannons.

Under the leadership of the CMC, ship crews could also be authorized to carry firearms.

China said other countries should not feel threatened by its coast guard as long as they do not violate China’s sovereignty and maritime rights.

In June, China defended its coast guards from accusations they were “forcefully taking” the catch of Filipino fishermen at Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal, saying its coast guards have always acted “in accordance with the law.”

“The Chinese coast guards have been safeguarding peace, order and tranquility in relevant waters and offered humanitarian aids to Philippine fishermen for many times. They have always acted in accordance with the law,” foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said.

He said China was allowing Filipino fishermen at Panatag Shoal “out of goodwill.”  

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano had said such arrangement was a show of “goodwill” by China and its acceptance by the Philippines was the right thing to do.

CHINESE COAST GUARD CHINESE PEOPLE’S ARMED POLICE FORCE
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