PCG in ‘small talks’ for joint patrol with US Coast Guard
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) on Saturday expressed support for a joint patrol with the United States Coast Guard (USCG), saying that there are already premature “small talks” about it.
According to PCG spokesperson Commodore Jay Tarriela during a media forum, the two coast guard agencies have common functions.
“It is still in the infancy stage. It has not been fully finalized, but there are already small talks about it,” Tarriela said in a mix of English and Filipino.
The PCG spokesperson said that some of the common functions that the PCG and USCG include upholding maritime safety, protecting the marine environment and conducting maritime law enforcement.
Tarriela said that while there are agreements of a joint patrol between the US and the Philippines, they have primarily been between the two countries’ naval forces.
READ: PH, US to restart joint patrols in South China Sea
On February 6, a Chinese vessel pointed a military-grade laser at a PCG ship, temporarily blinding some crew members. The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has downplayed the assault, saying that it was the PCG who wrongfully entered its territory.
Meanwhile, last Tuesday, February 21, the PCG also reported at least 30 Chinese vessels at the Sabina and Ayungin Shoal in the West Philippine Sea.
Coast Guard spots 30 suspected Chinese militia vessels in Sabina, Ayungin shoal
China harasses Philippine Coast Guard vessel with laser
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