Over 200 Chinese ships spotted in West PH Sea, says Navy official

Over 200 Chinese ships spotted in West PH Sea by Navy

/ 12:19 PM January 30, 2024

More than 200 Chinese vessels were spotted in the West Philippine Sea based on the latest monitoring of the Philippine Navy.

FILE PHOTO: This March 2021 photo shows almost 200 Chinese vessels in the waters off Julian Felipe (Whitsun) Reef in the West Philippine Sea, despite warnings and diplomatic protests lodged by the Philippines against China. On Tuesday, January 30, 2024,  Philippine Navy spokesperson for West Philippine Sea Commodore Roy Vincent Trinidad said CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Over 200 Chinese ships spotted in West PH Sea in latest Navy monitoring

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Navy has counted more than 200 Chinese vessels swarming areas in the West Philippine Sea, its spokesperson said Tuesday.

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Navy spokesperson for West Philippine Sea Commodore Roy Vincent Trinidad said that based on their latest monitoring, around 200 vessels were operated by Chinese maritime militia, 15 to 25 ships from the People’s Liberation Army-Navy, and 10 to 15 vessels from the China Coast Guard.

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Trinidad, however, quickly explained in a press briefing that “at any one time, it is difficult to give [an] exact number, considering the ships there are in constant motion.”

Armed Forces of the Philippines Western Command chief Vice Admiral Alberto Carlos said that over 400 foreign vessels were observed in the West Philippine Sea in 2023, but 85 percent were from China.

READ: AFP, NSC: Permit not needed for PH missions

Also last year, Carlos noted the growing number of Chinese vessels swarming various areas in the West Philippine Sea.

Carlos said in November that the military marked a bigger presence of Chinese maritime militia ships at Rozul (Iroquois) Reef and near Kalayaan town’s Pag-asa Island.

Pag-asa, also called Thitu Island, is located some 480 kilometers west of this city, Palawan’s provincial capital. It is the largest of the nine features occupied by the Philippines in the Spratly Islands.

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TAGS: China, navy, Philippines, West Philippine Sea

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