Panelo on structures on PH reefs: Is it true?
Malacañang on Tuesday sought to assure the public that it was looking into reports that China had built weather stations on three Philippine reefs in disputed areas in the West Philippine Sea.
Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the Philippine government would take action on the construction of the Chinese stations once the reports were verified.
“The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) is looking into these reports,” Panelo, also chief presidential legal counsel, said in a statement on Tuesday.
He said the DFA was coordinating with other government agencies and the Philippine Embassy in Beijing to verify the existence of the facilities.
Panelo made the remarks after the South China Morning Post (SCMP), quoting Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang, reported the installation of three weather observation stations by China.
The observation stations were built on Kagitingan, Subi and Panganiban Reefs, which were all being claimed by the Philippines, according to SCMP.
“News reports quoting officials of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs state that weather observation stations have been established on the three features in the West Philippine Sea,” Panelo said.