Scarborough Shoal

Sea Code of Conduct will nullify international arbitration verdict – fisherfolk group

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Sea Code of Conduct will nullify international arbitration verdict – fisherfolk group

File photo of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte shown the way by Chinese President Xi Jinping before a signing ceremony held in Beijing
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte (R) is shown the way by Chinese President Xi Jinping before a signing ceremony held in Beijing, China, October 20, 2016. To match Special Report PHILIPPINES-DRUGS/CHINA REUTERS/Ng Han Guan/Pool/File Photo

Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) rejects the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea which is part of the agenda in the upcoming 30th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to be held in Manila from November 12-14.

A Code of Conduct is a set of rules and guidelines aimed to address the freedom of navigation of claimant countries in the disputed South China Sea.

In a statement, the fisherfolk group said the Philippines does not necessarily need to ratify in the Code of Conduct because the country has already won the arbitration case against China over the South China Sea. The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) last year has invalidated China’s “9-dash line” claim over the entire South China Sea and has favored Philippines’ exclusive sovereign rights in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and extended continental shelf (ECS).

PAMALAKAYA said that entering into another set of rules will negate and set aside our winning in the international court.

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Fisherfolk unperturbed with President Duterte’s SONA, slams planned joint exploration with China

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Fisherfolk unperturbed with President Duterte’s SONA, slams planned joint

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PAMALAKAYA Chair Fernando Hicap speaks before the crowd at the People’s State of the Nation

exploration with China

Manila, Philippines — “President Rodrigo Duterte’s state of the nation was filled with hollow and expletive rhetoric, failed to address the plight of the Filipino people,” This was the reaction of the militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on the second State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte yesterday.

The fisherfolk group who mobilized hundreds of its fisherfolk members mainly from Southern Tagalog region assailed President Duterte for not making good on his progressive promises before on the fishing sector, particularly the active assertion of our territorial and sovereign rights in the disputed West Philippine Sea.

PAMALAKAYA rejects the joint exploration with China in the West Philippine Sea that President Duterte announced during the press conference conducted at the House of Representatives after his SONA.

We are dismayed by the softening of President Duterte towards China. We do not want him to exactly do what he promised before on riding a jet ski and stick a Philippine flag in Scarborough Shoal. But everything he promised except making Filipino fisherfolk return to Scarborough Shoal turned into lies,”

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Raise sea row in ASEAN Summit – Duterte urged

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Raise sea row in ASEAN Summit – Duterte urged

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Photo by reuters.com

Manila, Philipines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on the second day of 30th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit urged President Rodrigo Duterte to raise the sea row between the country and China involving the country’s exclusive economic zone in the state leaders attending the 4-day summit.

The country hosts the 30th ASEAN Summit from April 26-29 at Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay, City.

In a statement, PAMALAKAYA urged President Rodrigo Duterte not to miss a chance to bring up the issue of the maritime dispute to the Southeast Asian leaders. Despite the international tribunal ruling favoring the Philippines’ claim over the West Philippine Sea, China has yet to give up its claim and construction of islands and military facilities continues in the disputed waters. China’s massive reclamation activities might inflict heavy toll and irreversible damage to our marine biodiversity and moreover, to the livelihood of the Filipino fisherfolk in the long run.

Progress of bilateral talks by President Duterte with China have made the Filipino fishers return to their traditional fishing ground in Scarborough Shoal after years of being denied access to their livelihood due to Chinese harassment and intimidation.

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Fishers doubt Chinese-backtracking of permanent structure in Panatag Shoal

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Fishers doubt Chinese-backtracking of permanent structure in Panatag Shoal

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Fishers trooped Chinese Consulate in Makati in time of the international tribunal’s final verdict on the sea row

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.

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Assert sovereign rights against China – Duterte urged

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Assert sovereign rights against China – Duterte urgedIMG_8316

Manila, Philippines – Responding from the news that China is gearing to build its first permanent structure in the disputed Scarborough Shoal, the militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipians (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) tells President Rodrigo Duterte to exude extra vigilance because this might result to the deprivation of the Filipino fishers and complete takeover of Bejing in Scarborough Shoal.

Scarborough Shoal is part of the country’s exclusive economic zone of which China has been posing its claim through the 9-dash line assumption. China has yet to give up its unjust claim over the Philippine territory despite the international arbitration’s ruling last year favoring the Philippines’ claim on the disputed West Philippine Sea. The environmental monitoring station to be situated on features of Beijing-controlled Paracel islands, according to a Chinese official is among their government’s top priorities for 2017.

The fisherfolk group fears that this might compromise the livelihood of the Filipino fishers who were already able to return to their traditional fishing grounds last year after President Duterte’s diplomatic talk with China.

We cherish the developments that our country and China have reached towards a diplomatic resolution of the dispute, but building permanent structure to strengthen their irrational claim and probably military presence in our territory is too much. Our cordial relation with China recently doesn’t mean that we have given up our claim on the disputed waters. We are always ready to defend our territory by all means,”

“China has no any legal, moral and political right to settle any permanent structure in the disputed waters. They must respect the international ruling and acknowledge that the West Philippine Sea rightfully belongs to the Filipino people,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

PAMALAKAYA also warns China to back off from Benham Rise otherwise they will be subjected to chorus of criticisms from the international community have they plan to intrude on the 13-million hectare underwater resource-rich territory of the country. Presence of a Chinese vessel in Benham Rise has been monitored by a defense official last week.

We urge President Duterte to actively assert our sovereign rights against China and other foreign intruders. No one but the Filipino people has the right to utilize and maximize our marine resource. The administration must lead our nation in protecting and defending our sovereignty and not create a single breach that would make our territory out of our possession,” Hicap ended. ###

Trillanes in no position to speak for sovereignty – group

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Trillanes in no position to speak for sovereignty – group

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Senator Antonio Trillanes IV

Manila, Philippines – “Senator Antonio Trillanes IV has no right to speak about defending our sovereignty because we believe that he himself has once compromised it that he has even yet to explain to the public,”

This was the statement of the militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Thursday in response to the Magdalo Senator’s riding on the issue of Benham Rise to cover-up his anomalous visits to China during then-Aquino administration that led to the complete possession of Beijing to Scarborough Shoal, a traditional fishing ground of Filipino fishers and is part of the country’s exclusive economic zone. China has been posing its irrational claim on the shoal and has even built artificial island and military outpost. The complete occupation of China over Scarborough Shoal has resulted to the harassment and deprivation of Filipino fisherfolk of their livelihood.

Senator Trillanes has yet to answer on why his secret and numerous trips to China has led to the latter’s successful takeover of the Scarborough Shoal,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.

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White House intervention to South China Sea a threat to peaceful settlement with China – fisherfolk group

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White House intervention to South China Sea a threat to peaceful settlement with

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US President-elect Donald Trump | photo by Business Insider

China – fisherfolk group

Manila, Philippines – Responding from the newly elected United States (U.S.) President Donald Trump, the militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) has warned the White House on the possible implications of their intervention on the South China Sea affairs. The White House on Monday vowed to stop China from taking South China Sea islands to “defend international waters from being taken by only one country”.

China claims almost 90% of the South China Sea, of which $5-trillion worth of ship-borne trade passes every year. It has built artificial islands over the contested waters and constructs military facilities and airstrips. Over the years, China has been antagonistic and aggressive towards fishermen who sail within their claimed-territories including the Filipino fisherfolk who experienced violent harassments and intimidations from Chinese personnel.

But due to the continuous resistance of the Filipino people and fishers to uphold its national sovereignty and territorial integrity, China has forced to respect the rights of the Filipino fishers on their traditional fishing ground in Scarborough Shoal. Although Beijing has yet to totally give up its claim on the disputed waters, the Filipino fishers have consider this as an initial victory because they are now able to sail onto their traditional fishing ground which they were deprived for years.

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