Fisherfolk slams the arrival of another US warship in Manila Bay

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Fisherfolk slams the arrival of another US warship in Manila BayUSS-Fitzgerald.jpg

Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya-Pilipinas) on Thursday criticized the arrival of the United States (US) Warship in Manila Bay.

According to US Embassy, the USS Curtis Wilbur, an Arleigh Burke class guided with missile destroyer has docked in Manila Bay on January 24 as part of “routine visit for maintenance and crew rest”.

But the fisherfolk group expressed fear that the country will be once again be converted into a US naval base.

This is the sum of all our fears. The U.S. warships can go in and out of the archipelago without us knowing their real score. Worst is the Aquino administration is welcoming those American troops with open arms without considering its social implications to the Filipino people.” Salvador France, Pamalakaya vice-chairperson said in a statement.

The USS Curtis Wilbur is the third US Naval ship to arrive in the country since the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) was upheld its constitutionality by the Supreme Court. The EDCA will allow the return of U.S. Military bases and will allow the American troops to use the country’s facilities with all their might. Earlier, two U.S. nuclear attack submarine also docked in Subic Bay as part of its “Indo-Asia-Pacific deployment”.

Pamalakaya said that the frequent and increasing presence of these weapons-of-mass-destruction-carrier warships alarms the Filipino people for these are threats to our national security. Installation of nuclear weapons in our country will make us the target of all Uncle Sam’s adversaries.

“The Aquino administration is undermining the fact that these US warships carry deadly nukes to prepare the country as a launching pad for nuclear attack against entities or nations that would challenge Uncle Sam’s dominance as a global superpower.”  France said.

The fisherfolk group also fears that the presence of US warships will again lead to the disruptions on the livelihoods of the Filipino fisherfolk. Pamalakaya cited one incident on September 2014 where two fishing boats in Subic Bay were rammed by the U.S. vessel, three fisherfolk were injured in the incident and their boats were completely destroyed.

Even the lives and livelihoods of our fishers are adversely affected due to the irreverent presence of the American troops. We reiterate our call to completely abrogate the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), the EDCA and other U.S.-R.P. military treaties for this is a clear violation of our national sovereignty and patrimony.” France ended. ###

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