Philippines ‘reminds’ China of defense pact with US over incident in disputed waters — Analysis

According to the Philippine government, the Chinese Coast Guard has been accused of launching water cannons against two supply vessels in South China Sea disputed waters. The Coast Guard claimed that its boats were stopped and then forced to return.

Manila’s Department of Foreign Affairs detailed the encounter in a statement on Wednesday, alleging that a pair of supply boats en route to the Ayungin Shoal – also known as the Second Thomas Shoal – were stopped by three Chinese vessels and “water cannoned”Before they reached their destination.

“Fortunately, no one was hurt; but our boats had to abort their resupply mission,”Teodoro LOCSNIN, foreign affairs secretary, stated that it had transmitted its “outrage, condemnation and protest of the incident” to Beijing’s envoy to the Philippines, Huang Xilian.

It is illegal for the Chinese Coast Guard vessels to act in this manner. China does not have any law enforcement authority in these areas. These people must pay attention and not panic.

Though both China and the Philippines claim territorial rights to the Ayungin Shoal, The Hague’s Permanent Court of Arbitration ruled in the latter country’s favor in 2016. The Philippines has been occupying the region for longer than China, despite Chinese objections. In fact, its permanent court of arbitration ruled in favor of the Philippines after it deliberately grounded a navy vessel at the shoal.  

READ MORE: Manila backs controversial AUKUS security pact as move to fix ‘imbalance’ of power in Southeast Asia

Manila also responded quickly noteThat the supply vessels are “covered by the Philippines-United States Mutual Defense Treaty,”In 1951, Washington signed a deal that provides for the US military to respond to any attack on the nation. “island territories under its jurisdiction in the Pacific Ocean, its armed forces, public vessels or aircraft.” 

Beijing has yet to comment on the alleged ran-in.

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