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DFA summons Chinese envoy over latest Ayungin incident
DFA summons Chinese envoy over latest Ayungin incident
Nation
DFA summons Chinese envoy over latest Ayungin incident
by Christhel Cuazon25 March 2024
DZRH File Photo

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Monday, March 25 summoned the chargé d'affaires of the Chinese Embassy following the latest action of the China Coast Guard (CCG) and its maritime militia against a Philippine vessel during the rotation and resupply mission in Ayungin Shoal over the weekend.

In a statement, DFA spokesperson Ma. Teresita Daza said they summoned the Chinese chargé d'affaires to "convey the Philippines’ strong protest against the aggressive actions."

The Philippine Embassy in Beijing has also been instructed to lodge the same démarche (formal diplomatic representation) with the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Daza noted.

"“In these démarches, the Philippines stressed, among others, that China has no right to be in Ayungin Shoal, a low-tide elevation that lies within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone and continental shelf in accordance with the 1982 UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea) and as affirmed by the 2016 Arbitral Award," the statement read.

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"China’s continued interference with the Philippines’ routine and lawful activities in its own exclusive economic zone is unacceptable. It infringes upon the Philippines’ sovereign rights and jurisdiction," it added.

The DFA also stressed the Philippines demands that Chinese vessels leave the vicinity of Ayungin Shoal and the Philippine exclusive economic zone immediately.

On Saturday, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) reported that the CCG tried to block the resupply mission of a Philippine vessels with its dangerous maneuvers and water cannon.

The AFP also released videos of the incident showing the blatant action of CCG towards the country's vessel.

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The AFP also said Unaizah May 4 (UM4), which was carrying supplies for the Filipino troops in Ayungin Shoal, "sustained heavy damage'' due to the ''continued blasting of water cannons" from two CCG vessels.

Put to waste ASEAN-China efforts

According to Daza, China’s aggressive actions contradict and put to waste ASEAN-China efforts to promote practical activities to foster peace and cooperation in the region even as the Philippines continues to engage China in dialogue and diplomacy at the bilateral and multilateral levels.

"The Philippines has made sincere efforts to implement the instruction of President Marcos and President Xi to lower tensions. China’s aggressive actions call into question its sincerity in lowering the tensions and promoting peace and stability in the South China Sea," the DFA said.

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Once again, the DFA said the Philippines urges China to abide by international law and respect the legitimate rights of other states like the Philippines, and to stop its continued violation of international law, including the 1982 UNCLOS and the 2016 Arbitral Award.

“The Philippines urges China to take the correct track of abiding by international law and respecting the legitimate rights of other states like the Philippines, and to cease and desist from its continued violation of international law, including the 1982 UNCLOS and the 2016 Arbitral Award,” it said.

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