Gov’t to protest if proven China ships entered PH’s EEZ sans clearance
MANILA, Philippines — The government will file a diplomatic protest against China if it is proven that two of their survey ships operated within the country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) without proper clearance from Philippine authorities.
Presidential spokesman and chief legal counsel Salvador Panelo said this Thursday amid reports that two Chinese survey ships were seen operating on the eastern and northwestern side of the Philippines.
READ: 2 Chinese survey ships spotted operating in Philippines’ EEZ
Panelo said in a Palace briefing that China should have secured clearance from the Philippines before two of its survey ships operated within the country’s EEZ, noting that it is “part of security measures.”
But when asked about what the government will do if the Chinese ships were proven to have entered Philippine territory without proper clearance, Panelo said: “May violation. Then we will file a diplomatic protest.”
Ryan Martinson, an assistant professor at the U.S. Naval War College, posted on Twitter a photo of the tracking of Chinese oceanographic survey ship “Zhanjian” operating just 80 nautical miles off the east coast of the Philippines.
He also posted the tracking of Chinese survey ship Dong Fang Hong 3 operating at the northwestern side of the Philippines.
According to Panelo, the government is still validating the veracity of the reports but stressed that everything that poses a threat to the country’s security is always a cause for concern for the government. /kga
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