PH Navy: ‘Almost all’ Ayungin resupply missions in 2023 had Chinese presence
MANILA, Philippines — Almost all of the rotation and resupply (Rore) missions for the BRP Sierra Madre in the West Philippine Sea in 2023 had a presence of Chinese vessels.
Navy spokesperson for the West Philippine Sea Commodore Roy Vincent Trinidad said there were 14 Rore missions last year for the military outpost grounded in Ayungin Shoal.
“For the presence, I would say, with a certain degree of certainty, almost all — if not all — has a presence of at least one Coast Guard and maritime militia,” Trinidad said during a regular press briefing in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City.
Trinidad noted that three of these Rore missions were hounded by water cannon attacks by China.
“Of the 14 missions in Ayungin, three of them encountered harassment through water cannons,” Trinidad said.
On Aug. 6, the China Coast Guard fired a water cannon, causing damage to one of the boats from the Philippines. Another water cannon assault occurred anew on Nov. 10 during the same mission for the military outpost.
The third water cannon harassment occurred on Dec. 10, concurrent with the civilian-led Christmas convoy in the maritime features in the West Philippine Sea.
Trinidad said a total of 28 Rore missions occurred for all of the maritime features of the Kalayaan Island Group.