mandag 26. juli 2021

South China Sea: Philippines is changing strategy with China

Manila has changed tack. It's no longer seeking to appease Beijing in the hope of a fair deal. Instead, a Philippines patrol ship has confronted a Chinese warship intruding on its territory. The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) says the patrol vessel BRB Cabra was patrolling the Marie Louise Bank, a fishing ground in the northeastern Spratly Island group, when a Chinese naval survey vessel came into view.

It was just one day after the fifth anniversary of an international arbitration court ruling in favour of Manila's territorial rights to the region. But Manila waited more than a week to release news of the confrontation. The "navy warship" was seen to be flying the Chinese national flag, had the hull number 189 "and was marked by Chinese characters," a Coast Guard spokesperson said in a statement. "The PCG vessel moved closer to see more clearly the activity of the Chinese navy warship in our waters".