Gov’t urged to condemn and halt ‘continuing Chinese construction activities’ in the West Philippine Sea
Manila, Philippines — The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA) on Wednesday called on the government to ‘strongly condemn’ the construction of two research facilities in the West Philippine Sea.
Two research stations under the Integrated Research Center for Islands and Reefs of the Chinese Academy of Sciences have begun operations on Kagitingan Reef (Fiery Cross Reef), and Zamora Reef (Subi Reef), both parts of the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in the West Philippine Sea.
“While the whole world is focused on combatting the pandemic coronavirus disease (COVID-19), China, which is the source of the global pandemic, was working overtime for the completion of its facilities in our marine territory. We denounce this callous move of China in the strongest possible terms,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA National Chairperson said in a statement.
PAMALAKAYA demanded the Philippine government to ‘castigate’ China for its ‘continuous violation of our sovereign rights in the midst of a public health crisis’.
The group also urged the government to impose a ‘cease and desist order’ to all the Chinese construction activities in the West Philippine Sea to ‘temporarily deescalate the territorial dispute amid the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine’.
“While our attention is how to make ends meet amid the total lockdown without being infected by the virus, China is taking advantage and in an occupation-spree of our territorial waters,” added Hicap.
“Like how our government restrict its people of their daily activities, it must strongly compel China to halt its construction activities in the West Philippine Sea, most of all,” ended Hicap. ###