Author Topic: Keeping an eye on Panatag  (Read 1083 times)

dr demented

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Re: Keeping an eye on Panatag
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2019, 08:48:58 PM »

South China Sea: Philippine Coast Guard Spots PLAN Warship Off Scarborough Shoal
The warship was accompanied by China Coast Guard and maritime militia vessels.

 By Ankit Panda
June 10, 2019

 A Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy warship has been seen near  Scarborough Shoal, a disputed feature in the South China Sea claimed by  the Philippines and China.

According to Cmd. Armand Balilo, a spokesperson for the Philippine  Coast Guard, on Monday, a PLAN vessel was seen within 7 to 12 nautical  miles of Scarborough Shoal. Since a 2012 standoff between Beijing and  Manila, China has maintained a constant presence at the disputed shoal,  mainly in the form of maritime law enforcement vessels.

On Monday, Philippine Coast Guard personnel on board BRP Malabrigo spotted  the Chinese vessel, alongside two China Coast Guard vessels, and two  Chinese boats with the so-called maritime militia — irregular forces,  usually in the form of fishing vessels.

The latest sighting of a PLAN warship near Scarborough Shoal comes  after the intensification of China Coast Guard and maritime militia  activity near Pag-asa Island, the site of the Philippines’ largest  outpost in the South China Sea, in April and May.

President Rodrigo Duterte warned China to “lay off Pag-asa” in April,  warning that the island belonged to the Philippines. Duterte’s warning  came shortly after a visit to Manila by U.S. Secretary of State Mike  Pompeo in March. Pompeo clarified that the U.S.-Philippine Mutual  Defense Treaty would cover Philippine-administered features in the South  China Sea.

Scarborough Shoal is located in the South China Sea, 120 nautical  miles off the Philippines’ island of Luzon. In 2016, a Hague-based  arbitral tribunal at the Permanent Court of Arbitration decided in  Manila’s favor regarding fishing rights at the shoal.

In 2013, the Philippines under the previous government of President Benigno Aquino III filed a case at the tribunal alleging that China had  pressed excessive maritime claims at Scarborough Shoal and in the Spratly Islands, where the two countries also have overlapping claims.

The tribunal decided that China had “through the operation of its  official vessels at Scarborough Shoal from May 2012 onwards, unlawfully  prevented Filipino fishermen from engaging in traditional fishing at  Scarborough Shoal.” The tribunal made no finding on the sovereignty of  the feature, however.
The Chinese government disregarded the tribunal’s award, which was  delivered in July 2016. Beijing did not formally participate in the  legal proceedings. Since July 2016, the government of President Rodrigo Duterte in the Philippines has not pressed the 2016 arbitral tribunal  award and instead pursued economic and diplomatic rapprochement with  Beijing.

China also calls Scarborough Shoal Huangyan Dao. The shoal is also  known by the Filipino names Panatag Shoal or Bajo de Masinloc.