Philippines says Chinese envoy summoned over ‘aggressive actions’ off reef

Philippines says Chinese envoy summoned over 'aggressive actions' off reef

MANILA: The Philippines said on Monday ( Mar 25 ) it had summoned a Chinese envoy over “aggressive actions” by the China Coast Guard and other vessels near a reef off the Southeast Asian country’s coast.

Beijing and Manila have a longer history of sea regional problems in the South China Sea and there have been repeated clashes between their arteries near disputed islands in recent months.

The latest incident took place on Saturday near Second Thomas Shoal in the Spratly Islands during a typical Spanish vision to replenish Filipino forces garrisoned on the BRP Sierra Madre, a grounded military ship.

The Philippines said the China Coast Guard blocked its source vessel and damaged it with&nbsp, water gun, injuring three men.

The China Coast Guard has defended its steps, describing them as “lawful rules, intrusion and ejection” of a foreign vehicle that” tried to firmly compromise” into Chinese lakes.

Next Thomas Shoal is about 200km from the eastern Spanish island of Palawan, and more than 1, 000km from China’s nearest major territory, Hainan area.

On Monday, Manila conveyed its” strong opposition against the violent activities undertaken by the China Coast Guard and Chinese Maritime Militia against the movement and resupply vision undertaken by the Philippines in Ayungin Shoal”, the Department of Foreign Affairs said, using the Filipino brand for Second Thomas Shoal.

It said the Philippine embassy in Beijing even lodged a similar rally with the Chinese overseas department.

” In these demarches, the Philippines stressed, among others, that China has no right to be in Ayungin Shoal”, the foreign affairs ministry said.

” The Philippines demands that Chinese arteries leave the region of Ayungin Shoal and the Spanish special economic zone soon”.

It is the same spot where Taiwanese ships have unleashed water gun and collided with Filipino vessels in similar remain- offs in recent months.

A spokesman for the Chinese embassy in Manila did not immediately comment on the summoning of its envoy.