House members thank G7 for support amid West Philippine Sea tensions

By: - Reporter / @FArgosinoINQ
/ 08:38 PM June 16, 2024

Lawmakers from the House of Representatives expressed their gratitude on Sunday to the G7 bloc of developed nations for backing the Philippines amid the increasing tensions in the West Philippine Sea (WPS). 

This map is not to scale and is for visual representation purposes only. Graphics by: Samuel Yap / INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — Lawmakers from the House of Representatives expressed their gratitude on Sunday to the G7 bloc of developed nations for backing the Philippines amid the increasing tensions in the West Philippine Sea (WPS).

In separate statements, Speaker Martin Romualdez and China critic Cagayan de Oro’s 2nd District Rep. Rufus Rodriguez lauded the G7, which consists of the United States, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, Japan, and the United Kingdom, for supporting the Philippines.

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“On behalf of our country, we would like to express our deep gratitude to members of G7 and our allies in Asia-Pacific and other nations that have made similar statements of support,” Romualdez said.

“Beijing should cease its aggression and abandon areas inside our 200-mile exclusive economic zone that its forces have occupied and militarized, reclaimed, or seized. Otherwise, China risks isolation and possible sanctions,” he added.

The lawmaker also said that China should stop its harassment against Filipino fisherfolk and troops within the Scarborough (Panatag) Shoal, also known as  Bajo de Masinloc and Ayungin Shoal, pointing out that “they are very far from China and its exclusive economic zone.”

Likewise, Rodriguez welcomed the support, calling China “a pariah before the world because no nation would want to be at the receiving end of another country’s aggressive activities.”

“The G7 declaration of support, together with similar pronouncements from allies of the Philippines in this part of the world, including Australia, New Zealand, and Japan, is proof that we are winning the battle against China in the international community,” he said.

“In our case, Beijing’s aggression is taking place inside our own 200-mile exclusive economic zone,” he added.

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Based on reports, the G7 bloc warned China on sending weapons components to Russia and play by the rules on trade.

Aside from the lawmakers, National Security Adviser Eduardo Año also welcomed the recent statement of the G7 nations and said that the country stands with them.

“The resolute stance of the G7 nations against the dangerous use of coast guard and maritime militia in the South China Sea, particularly the obstruction of high seas freedom of navigation, is a significant affirmation of the principles of international law and the rules-based international order,” Año said.

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“We appreciate the G7’s explicit condemnation of the increasing use of dangerous maneuvers and water cannons against Philippine vessels. This acknowledgment underscores the international community’s recognition of the threats faced by our nation and reaffirms the importance of upholding the rule of law in maritime disputes. Indeed, there is no legal basis for China’s expansive maritime claims in the South China Sea,” he added.

For comprehensive coverage, in-depth analysis, and the latest updates on the West Philippine Sea issue, visit our special site here. Stay informed with articles, videos, and expert opinions.

TAGS: G7, West Philippine Sea

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