Defying China's protest, Philippines to continue patrols in Spratlys
This file photo taken on April 21, 2017, shows an aerial image, from a Philippine airforce plane, of Subi Reef in the South China Sea and claimed by China.
AFP/Ted Aljibe
Defying China's protest, Philippines to continue patrols in Spratlys
Patricia Lourdes Viray (Philstar.com) - August 26, 2020 - 11:23am

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines will continue to patrol the Spratly Islands in the West Philippine Sea despite Chna's call to stop "illegal provocative activities" in the area, the country's top diplomat said.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. stressed that Beijing already lost the July 2016 arbitral award, which invalidated its nine-dash line claim over the South China Sea, part of which is the West Philippine Sea.

"We're gonna continue our patrol because it's ours. That's all there is to it," Locsin told ANC's "Headstart" Wednesday morning.

China may continue to call the Philippines' actions in the West Philippine Sea as "illegal provocation" but "that's their right", the DFA chief added.

"It's a free world. We can so another country from talking," Locsin said.

Beijing earlier accused Manila of infringing its sovereignty and security by sending military aircraft into the air space adjacent to the Spratly Islands, where China had installed military outposts.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian further insisted that the China Coast Guard conducts law enforcement in the waters of Scarborough or Panatag Shial as "lawful practice."

"The Philippines infringes on China's sovereignty and security by sending military aircraft into air space adjacent to Nansha islands and reefs garrisoned by China. China urges the Philippine side to immediately stop illegal provocations," Zhao said in a press briefing on August 21.

Zhao's remarks came in response to the Philippines' filing of a diplomatic protest over China's actions in the West Philippine Sea.

On August 20, the Department of Foreign Affairs announced that it lodged a diplomatic protest to Beijing over the illegal confiscation by the Chinese coast guard of Filipino fishermen's fish aggregating devices or payaos in Panatag Shoal in May.

"The Philippines also resolutely objected to China's continuing illicit issuances of radio challenges to Philippine aircraft conducting legitimate regular maritime patrols in the West Philippine Sea," the DFA said in a statement.

PHILIPPINES-CHINA TIES SCARBOROUGH SHOAL SOUTH CHINA SEA SPRATLY ISLANDS TEODORO LOCSIN JR. WEST PHILIPPINE SEA
Philstar
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with