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AFP: Chinese vessel executes dangerous maneuvers vs. PH ship inside Pag-asa Island
AFP: Chinese vessel executes dangerous maneuvers vs. PH ship inside Pag-asa Island
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AFP: Chinese vessel executes dangerous maneuvers vs. PH ship inside Pag-asa Island
by Mary Antalan17 October 2023
Photo Courtesy: AFP

China's navy vessel performed dangerous maneuvers over the Philippine navy vessel inside Pag-asa Island on Friday, October 13, according to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

In a video posted by the AFP, the Philippine Navy's (PN) BRP Benguet (LS507) can be seen warning off China’s Navy vessel for performing dangerous maneuvers inside the Pag-Asa Territorial Sea.

It has been said that the PN vessel was en route to Rizal Reef Station for the conduct of a regular rotation and resupply (RoRe) mission when the incident happened.

PN issued consecutive radio challenges to China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy Ship 621 (PLAN 621) after it shadowed the former at an 80-yard distance and attempted to cross LS507's bow with a CPA (closest point of approach) of 350 yards at 5.8 nautical miles south-west of Pag-asa Island.

"The PN crew cited the violation of the Collision Regulations (COLREG) in its radio challenges and demanded that the Chinese vessel to steer clear of the BRP Benguet," the AFP said.

It said that the Philippine Naval ship received a counter-response from PLAN 621 using their so-called and patently baseless "ten-dash line” narrative.

According to AFP Chief Vice Admiral Alberto Carlos, the dangerous maneuvers pose significant risks to maritime safety, collision prevention, and human lives at sea.

"China must immediately halt these unsafe actions and conduct themselves in a professional manner by adhering to international law," Carlos said.

Meanwhile, AFP Chief of Staff General Romeo Brawner Jr. urged China to cease these dangerous maneuvers and aggressive actions toward Philippine vessels.

He added that the potential for collisions and accidents at sea further highlights the urgency for China to uphold maritime safety standards.

“These dangerous and offensive maneuvers by China's PLAN not only risk collision but also directly endanger the lives of maritime personnel from both sides. The AFP remains committed to ensuring the safety of its personnel during RoRe missions and asserts that it will continue to adhere to the rules-based international order,” said Brawner.

The Philippines, meanwhile, stood firm that it is conducting activities with a legitimate rotation and resupply mission inside its territorial seas.

"The Philippines has continued to call on China to immediately stop its illegal activities in the country’s maritime zones," said the country's military forces Chief of Staff.

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