DFA to look into Chinese coast guard, reporter row
Responding to a question on whether the country would file a protest over the incident, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. on Twitter said they are “checking” if cruising in disputed waters within the country’s exclusive economic zone covers a provocative incident.
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DFA to look into Chinese coast guard, reporter row
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - November 25, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. said they are currently looking into the incident involving the Chinese coast guard and the media team of a television network that recently went to Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal.

Responding to a question on whether the country would file a protest over the incident, Locsin on Twitter said they are “checking” if cruising in disputed waters within the country’s exclusive economic zone covers a provocative incident.

“Checkin’ if cruisin’ in waters under exclusive economic zone (EEZ) principle that it is ours for fishing (for fish, not trouble) and other economic activities – but disputed nonetheless – includes provoking an incident. Maybe it does. Legal team working on it,” he tweeted.

Asked why holding a camera is provocation, Locsin noted the difference of taking fish and video in the disputed area.

“Fish and video, apples and oranges, but you may be right,” he said. 

“Checking with legal what if any is our arrangement with China regarding our EEZ under UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea) to which Philippine and China subscribe but not US which anyway will not fight. Check checking lang,” he added.

Senators on Friday urged the Duterte administration to file a protest over the incident, which involved GMA-7 reporter Jun Veneracion and his crew being barred by Chinese coast guard from doing a follow-up on Filipino fishermen whose catch were being taken by the Chinese.

A clip of the incident, which happened on Nov. 8 and was aired on Thursday on GMA’s documentary Reporter’s Notebook, showed a member of the Chinese coast guard telling Veneracion that he could not do an interview without permission from China.

The Chinese was also heard saying it will be a “forced matter” if the media crew did not leave the area.

The documentary was aired days after the two-day state visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping, who vowed friendship and closer ties with the Philippines.

CHINESE COAST GUARD DEPARTMENT FO FOREIGN AFFAIRS TEODORO LOCSIN JR.
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