Philippines Slams China for 'Dangerous Maneuver' in Disputed Sea

Darnell Taylor
May 4, 2021

China-controlled Scarborough is one of the region's richest fishing grounds and a flashpoint between the two countries, which have rival claims. Not us. We're trying. You. "You're like an ugly oaf forcing your attentions on a handsome guy who wants to be a friend; not to father a Chinese province".

Asked about his use of language, Locsin said later that 'usual suave diplomatic speak gets nothing done'.

This coral reef is located 230 kilometers from Luzon, the main island of the Philippines.

In the latest incident, the Department of Foreign Affairs said it "has protested the shadowing, blocking, risky manoeuvre and radio challenges by the Chinese coast guard of Philippine coast guard vessels conducting legitimate maritime patrols and training exercises" from April 24 to 25 near Scarborough Shoal off the northwestern Philippines.

The Philippine foreign minister has posted an expletive-laced Twitter message demanding China's vessels get out of disputed waters, the latest exchange in a war of words with Beijing over the South China Sea.

The island is surrounded by rich fishing waters which were effectively seized by China in 2012 after a standoff between Chinese and Philippine fishing boats.

NPR reported in March that China had about 220 vessels at the Whitsun Reef, which is claimed by the Philippines, China and Vietnam.

China seized it in 2012 and has subsequently ignored a 2016 worldwide tribunal decision that declared its historical claim over most of the South China Sea to be without basis.

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What they are exactly at this point in time we don't have, but we'll work them out over the coming 24 hours". But Christmas Island was used in March and April previous year for people returning from China and Japan.

The latest spat between Manila and Beijing over the resource-rich waters - which China claims nearly entirely - flared up in March after hundreds of Chinese boats were spotted inside the Philippines' Exclusive Economic Zone. The Philippine government demanded the vessels leave, then deployed coast guard vessels to the area.

The ministry denounced "belligerent actions" by the Chinese coast guard in the vicinity of Bajo de Masinloc, CNBC reported.

The Chinese defence ministry last week urged the United States to restrain its front-line forces in the air and seas near China.

"China remains to be our benefactor".

Responding to a request for comment, a spokeswoman for the US State Department reiterated a March 28 statement by Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying the US "stands with our ally, the Philippines, in the face of (China's) maritime militia pressure in the South China Sea".

Scarborough Shoal is within the Philippines' 200 nautical-mile exclusive economic zone, its government said, while it's approximately 472 nautical miles from the nearest coast of China.

China's navy said last month similar drills will come more regularly amid escalating tensions with the island of Taiwan, which Beijing claims as its sovereign territory.

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