Fishers doubt Chinese-backtracking of permanent structure in Panatag Shoal
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) is cynical on China’s recent statement withdrawing the previous reports on its plan to build a permanent structure in the disputed Paracel islands including Philippine-owned Scarborough Shoal.
A Chinese local official last week has claimed that the environmental monitoring structure to be built in Paracel islands is one of Beijing’s top priorities this year. But a Chinese foreign ministry yesterday has denied the previous reports.
In a statement, PAMALAKAYA said China’s backtracking of their previous pronouncement might only be to abate public tensions and sentiments that escalate quickly over the planned-permanent construction in the Philippine territory.
“The Chinese local official won’t utter a statement out of nowhere; his original pronouncement must be derived from somewhere. Beijing can only prove their sincerity on preserving the South China Sea if they concede from the international tribunal decision and completely halt their reclamation activities on the disputed waters,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
Marine sanctuary might leave Scarborough Shoal wide open to foreign poachers –
Manila, Philippines – The fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) told President Rodrigo Duterte to reconsider his decision to declare the lagoon in Scarborough Shoal as a marine sanctuary for a reason to preserve the deteriorating marine resources in the fishing water.
Scarborough Shoal, which is 124 nautical miles away from the shoreline of the province of Zambales is part of the country’s 220-nautical mile exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and 150-nautical mile extended continental shelf (ECS). China takes its full control in the shoal on 2012 and aggressively prevented the Filipino fishermen from entering in the disputed waters. But after President Duterte’s state visit to China last October, Filipino fishers have now been able to return to their traditional fishing grounds.
Pamalakaya said declaring the lagoon as marine protected area might again result to depriving the Filipino fishers of their right to livelihood and fishing zones.
“Marine sanctuary might bring back the situation where Filipino fishers are not allowed to enter our own territory, but this time it will be our own law and government that will prohibit them, not China. Filipino fishers have yet to recover after years of deprivation and restriction from the West Philippine Sea. We fear that declaring it as marine sanctuary would pave way for another fishing blockade,” Hicap said.
Fishers rejoice as they return to Scarborough Shoal
Manila, Philippines – The patriotic fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA) rejoices as the Filipino fishers are now able to return and fish in the Scarborough Shoal.
Since Tuesday, Filipino fishers from Zambales and Pangasinan have been fishing in Scarborough Shoal without them being harassed and chased by the Chinese Coast Guards unlike before. This was after President Duterte’s state visit to China last October 18-21 where he had an informal talk with an unnamed Chinese leader regarding the territorial dispute.
“We welcome President Duterte’s concrete deeds to make our fishermen return to their traditional fishing grounds in Scarborough Shoal. Moreover, it is an initial victory for the Filipino fishermen who consistently aired their collective voices to assert their rights to the West Philippine Sea. Without the unity of the fisherfolk and other patriotic sectors and alliance who took up to the streets and engaged with government officials, we may not be able to take our territory back,” Fernando Hicap, Pamalakaya Chairperson said in a statement.
PH fishers slam China’s act in disputed shoal, but worries come chiefly from US
By Gerry Albert Corpuz and Heki Beki Rosales
Manila, Philippines- The fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) assailed the Chinese government after Beijing defended the Chinese Coast Guard’s (CCG) use of water cannons to drive away Filipino fishermen from the disputed Panatag Shoal.
In a press statement, Pamalakaya said the act of the Chinese CCG is unnecessary and it will not help in seeking a peaceful resolution on the ongoing territorial dispute with the Philippines.
Joint Beijing-Manila probe into Scarborough incident sought
- Written by Charlie V. Manalo
- The militant fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) yesterday pressed a Beijing-Manila joint investigation of an alleged incident involving Chinese Coast Guards firing water cannon at Filipino fishermen near the disputed Scarborough Shoal on Jan. 27.
This even as a partylist lawmaker called on the United Nations (UN) to immediately decide on the territorial dispute on the contested area to defuse tensions.
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff Gen. Emmanuel Bautista in forum with the Foreign Correspondents of the Philippines (Focap) said the incident was relayed by small fishermen to the Philippine authority and that China still maintained armed Coast Guard and other vessels at Panatag Shoal, some 220 kilometers off the Philippine main island of Luzon.