PH Navy deploys vessels, aircraft to Sulu Sea amid Sabah standoff

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MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine Navy on Thursday said it had deployed vessels to the Sulu Sea to intensify its watch on the Philippine backdoor amid a standoff between Malaysian security forces and a group of armed Filipinos in Lahad Datu town in the eastern Malaysian state of Sabah.

A statement from the Navy said the deployment supported the efforts of the military in Western Mindanao to ensure a peaceful resolution of the standoff in Sabah.

The Philippine vessels are patrolling the southern waters jointly with Malaysian naval forces, the statement said.

Meanwhile, Vice President Jejomar Binay assured the public on Thursday that President Aquino was dealing with the standoff, now in its second week.

“President Aquino is on top of the situation,” Binay said in a statement. “The Department of Foreign Affairs is exerting all efforts and using all diplomatic avenues to arrive at a peaceful resolution of the Sabah controversy. That is the President’s priority. Let us not second-guess the President.”

Binay said the President “should be allowed to make decisions without pressure” from anybody or any group.

“He will decide based on what is best for the national interest and the safety of Filipinos in Sabah,” Binay said.

He described the situation in Sabah as “delicate” and “requiring sobriety.”

Lt. Cmdr. Gregory Fabic, Navy spokesperson, told reporters in Camp Aguinaldo in a phone interview that six naval vessels and a Philippine Navy Islander aircraft were now in the vicinity of Sulu, Tawi-Tawi and Basilan.

Fabic said the Navy’s maritime patrol began on Feb. 12, a day after the standoff began in Tanduao.

Asked about the objective of the patrol, Fabic replied: “It’s for (the) security and stability of the situation.”

Last week, Armed Forces chief of staff Gen. Emmanuel Bautista said the Philippine and Malaysian militaries had agreed to tighten their border patrols to prevent other “illegal entries” into each other’s territories to avoid complicating the situation in Sabah.

Around 300 armed followers of the sultan of Sulu traveled to Sabah last week to press the sultanate’s claim to the territory, in a move that supporters of the government in the south say is intended to scuttle the peace talks between the Aquino administration and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

The INQUIRER on Thursday reported that emissaries from the Aquino administration were working quietly to convince Sultan Jamalul Kiram III to recall his followers from Sabah, and that Malaysia had given him until Friday to order them home.

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/HRIOYV3XQH53ZNYJYZAOUGCHC4 Jss

    LAMANG ANG PILIPINAS KONG MAGKA GIRA ALAM MO KONG BAKIT MAS EXPERIENCCE NA TAYO SA MGA GANYAN GIRA, TAKOT YAN ANG MALAYSIA AT MGA BAGO MGA GAMIT NATIN.

    • wheelers

      jejeje, proud ako s iyo… ano un, gamit pang plantsa o gamit png laba?
      bka nman bagong gamit sa paggawa ng shabu? pwede din bagong condom.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/HRIOYV3XQH53ZNYJYZAOUGCHC4 Jss

    HOY KAYONG MGA ABUSAYAP PARA NAMAN MAKABAWE AT MAKATULONG KAYO MANGIDNAP NA KAYO NG TURISTA SA MALAYSIA.

  • http://joboni96.myopenid.com/ joboni96

    concentrate sa west philippine sea

    problema ng malaysia yan
    just support the sulu royal army

    1. malaysia to increase to $10 million per year rent
    to be used on both sides of the border

    2. bangsa moro to support the sultanate in sabah issue

    3. sovereignty issue to be set aside in the meantime
    in exchange for the commercial transaction in no. 1

    4. philippine government gives the sultanate
    the power to negotiate but
    concurrence power is reserved

    5. money in no.1 will be used for development of
    sultanate on both countries, and bangsa moro
    led and managed by the sultanate

    6. brunei as mediator

    7. dont let hegemonist intsik switik and
    u.s. imperialist take advantage of this

  • Albert Einstien

    anong KLASENG LIDER meron tayo..yung mga HEROES na GUMAGAWA ng TRABAHO ng GOBYERNO ay sila pa ang sisihin……si pnoy parang jukebox ng malaysia…kung ano sabihin ng malaysia INU-ULIT nya lang….parang si ninoy lang MALAYSIAN spokesperson sa senado pa nagspeech at ibulgar ang SEKRETONG pagbawi ni marcos sa SABAH…… BAKIT HINDI ang MALAYSIA ang sabihan mo PNOY na UMALIS na sa TERITORYO ng RP at GAGAMITIN na ng PILIPINAS ang SABAH….sana BUHAY si RIZAL, BONIFACIO, LAPU-LAPU at SULTAN KUDARAT….garabe na to …!

    bansa gumising kana ipagtangol mo ang iyong sarili sa mga kaaway, anay at hudas sa PILIPINAS…BAWIIN na ang SABAH..

    kung HINDI ngayon kelan pa!

    kung HINDI ang mga MAMAMAYAN sino pa!

    ..ang gobyerno ni pnoy ay KAANIB ng MALAYSIA na nagnakaw ng yaman ng bansa for 50 years…at umalipin sa mga kababayan natin sa SABAH….

    AFP & PNP do your PRIME duty as protector of the STATE , NATIONAL TERRITORY & SOVEREIGNTY & PEOPLE…HELP our CITIZENS in SABAH…

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ELTWKJPUAIB6ANDT4KSL7BSATA Shalani

      in other words, ang presidente natin ay TRAYDOR!

    • wheelers

      idol kita, maganda ang reasons mo pra mabawi ng pinas ang sabah….
      unang gawin mo ay mg pa enlist k n sa military pr pg ngkagiyera e ikaw ang ilagay s frontline… may bayag k b n makipgbarilan s militar ng malaysia??? ipaglaban mo kami idol. bayani k ng pilipinas. hwag mo ng kuwestiyunin ang dapat gampanan ng AFP at PNP. mabuhay ka!!!!!

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/FQQPZLNOMD2EBFTHSWOP6QGZWY Marshall

      lang wenta.

  • RomyLitz

    The Malaysian government under Mahathir and Najib must be dissolved and let the democratic leaders take over. The Philippine should support the citizens of Malaysia to boot out the corrupt and murderous leaders.

  • http://twitter.com/QuartzCrystals Joy&Kat

    The standoff in Sabah is a very delicate issue for all camps to handle. If Pnoy makes a blunder on this issue then UNA can say goodbye to Mindanao and around half of Visayas votes forever.  Magsisisi tyak yung tatlong malasadong itlog dyan. Landslide wins for the opposition because they’re not UNA – that would be the consensus to a simple minded voter. What’s the point of voting for a leadership who can not protect its own against foreign threats? Definitely, the outcome of the Sabah standoff will be used as a political ground by either party. 

    This Sabah issue is a checkmate for Pnoy – whichever move he makes he loses.  So he will choose the option to support the reclaiming of Sabah by the Kirams coz this move will extend the shelf life of his political career.  Either way, the Kirams will win and hence the minority.

    This fate is unavoidable. The tides are turning. Filipinos everywhere, let’s rally behind our president, cabinet and minorities to weave a unified front in reclaiming Sabah. The time has come.   

  • http://www.facebook.com/efren.ramirez.1426 Efren Ramirez

    kung nagbabayad man ang malaysia sa sultan ng sulu,ang ibig sabihin ang sabah ay may tunay na pag mamay ari.may karapatan ang may ari na kunin kung ano man ang sa kanya.sana ang ating governo ay mamulat ang mga mata,wag din pumayag sa dikta nang malaysia sana suportahan nalang natin ang ipinaglaban ng sultan sa sulu.mabuhay ang sultan ng sulu.saludo ako sa inyo.

  • Mamang Pulis

    si Kristel Jane o Stephanie???—hindi nyo ba hihiramin? padyak ulit para pang hakot ng Royal Army??

    baka pag sinakay sa LCT yan—-magkaroon ng gulo—may rason na banatan sila….

    ayon ay kung uuwi nga ang tao ni Sultan….

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/FQQPZLNOMD2EBFTHSWOP6QGZWY Marshall

    Umeepal na naman ang UNAnong MALIGNO…

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