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HomeNewsPhilippines issues 'strongest protest' after Chinese water cannon assault on navy boat

Philippines issues ‘strongest protest’ after Chinese water cannon assault on navy boat

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The Philippines lodged its “strongest protest” in opposition to Beijing on Monday and summoned a senior Chinese language diplomat over a water cannon assault by the Chinese language coast guard that injured Filipino navy crew members and closely broken their boat within the disputed South China Sea, officers stated.

Two Chinese language coast guard ships hit a Philippine navy-operated provide boat with water cannons Saturday within the newest and most critical confrontation between the rival Asian claimants close to the disputed Second Thomas Shoal, which is surrounded by Chinese language vessels in a bid to dislodge Philippine forces from there.

The repeated high-seas confrontations since final 12 months have sparked fears of a bigger battle that might put China and america on a collision course. The U.S. has warned repeatedly that it’s obligated to defend the Philippines — its oldest treaty ally in Asia — if Filipino forces, ships or plane come beneath an armed assault, together with within the South China Sea.

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The US, the European Union, Japan, Australia and about 16 different international locations have expressed assist to the Philippines and the rule of legislation, in accordance with the Division of Overseas Affairs in Manila.

China accused Philippine vessels of “intruding” into Chinese language waters and its Protection Ministry warned Sunday that Beijing will proceed to take “resolute and decisive measures to firmly safeguard its territorial sovereignty and maritime rights.”

The Chinese language Embassy in Manila issued an announcement by the Chinese language coast guard that warned the Philippines in opposition to “enjoying with hearth.”

A Chinese coast guard ship uses water cannons on a Philippine resupply vessel

On this display seize from video offered by the Armed Forces of the Philippines, a Chinese language coast guard ship makes use of water cannons on a Philippine resupply vessel because it approaches Second Thomas Shoal, regionally known as Ayungin shoal, within the disputed South China Sea on March 23, 2024. (Armed Forces of the Philippines through AP)

Philippine Overseas Undersecretary Theresa Lazaro in a cellphone name along with her Chinese language counterpart expressed “the Philippines’ strongest protest in opposition to the aggressive actions undertaken by the China coast guard and Chinese language maritime militia in opposition to the rotation and resupply mission undertaken by the Philippines,” the Division of Overseas Affairs stated in an announcement.

It added that it individually summoned a senior Chinese language diplomat in Manila to convey the protest and demand that Chinese language ships instantly depart the waters round Second Thomas Shoal, which lies within the Philippines’ unique financial zone, and for China to cease violating worldwide legislation.

Philippine protection, safety and overseas affairs officers convened a gathering Monday to debate new steps to take care of what they are saying is China’s unacceptable and provocative actions within the South China Sea. Their suggestions can be submitted to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and weren’t instantly launched to the general public.

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Second Thomas Shoal has been occupied by a small contingent of Philippine navy and marines on a marooned warship since 1999, however has been surrounded by Chinese language coast guard and different vessels in an more and more tense standoff. It’s the second time the Philippine provide boat has been broken by water cannon in March.

The U.S. lays no claims to the busy seaway, a key international commerce route, however has deployed Navy ships and fighter jets in what it calls freedom of navigation operations which have challenged China’s claims to nearly all the South China Sea. Beijing says the strengthening of U.S. alliances in Asia, together with with the Philippines, is aimed toward containing China and threatens regional stability.

Apart from China and the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei even have overlapping claims within the resource-rich and busy waterway. Beijing has refused to acknowledge a 2016 worldwide arbitration ruling that invalidated its expansive claims on historic grounds.

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