Philippines diplomatically protests Chinese vessels around Thitu island

Hundreds of Chinese vessels have surrounded a island in South China Sea that is administered by Philippines. A diplomatic protest by the country to China reveals those are about 275 in number and have been spotted this year.

According to armed forces spokesperson Edgard Arevalo quantifying the number was difficult as the Chinese ships and boats come and go from the area surrounding Thitu island or as commonly called as Pag-asa island.

Arevalo added, “The information that we got is the more likely intention is to establish their presence in the area.”

Philippines presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said they have several questions to ask Beijing if the Chinese government acknowledges the fact.

Panelo added there are more questions like why China is doing it and Manila will politely ask Beijing not to do what they are doing.

Meanwhile, China’s ambassador to Philippines, Zhao Jianhua, said they are currently trying to verify the number of ships and boats around the island as those may be fishing vessels, unarmed.

Hundreds of Chinese vessels have surrounded a island in South China Sea that is administered by Philippines.

The island is in disputed Spratlys chain and Beijing controls the reefs and atolls on it. Over the past few years the Chinese government has built ports, runways and buildings on the chain.

Philippines opposition lawmaker Gary Alejano said, “China is establishing a norm there which we cannot alter later on. Every day is a wasted opportunity to assert our sovereignty if we do not act now.”

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