China’s actions in West Philippine Sea undermine regional peace – Blinken

By: - Reporter / @zacariansINQ
/ 11:15 AM June 20, 2024

China's actions in West Philippine Sea undermine regional peace - Blinken

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken reacts to China’s action in the West Philippine Sea. | Agence France Presse

MANILA, Philippines — The recent aggressive actions of China in Ayungin  (Second Thomas) Shoal in the West Philippine Sea “undermine regional peace and stability,” said US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken.

According to the US Embassy in the Philippines on Thursday, Blinken, during a meeting with Foreign Affairs Sec. Enrique Manolo, also reiterated the US’ “ironclad commitments” to the country under its mutual defense treaty.

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“Secretary Blinken emphasized that the PRC’s (People’s Republic of China) actions undermine regional peace and stability and underscored the United States’ ironclad commitments to the Philippines under our Mutual Defense Treaty,” State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said, based on a readout sent by the US embassy to reporters.

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Miller also said Blinken and Manalo exchanged views on “how to build on the momentum from recent high-level bilateral engagements on issues of shared concern.”

READ: US condemns China over Ayungin incident which caused ‘bodily injury’

This development came after a ramming incident on Monday, June 17, between China Coast Guard (CCG) vessels and Filipino boats during a resupply mission to BRP Sierra Madre.

It resulted in a Philippine Navy sailor having his thumb severed, with several other naval personnel sustaining minor injuries.

READ: PH Navy sailor loses thumb, others injured in CCG ramming incident

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The Armed Forces of the Philippines said the CCG also used water cannons and even boarded Filipino vessels.

The Philippines and China have been embroiled in a territorial dispute after Beijing claimed most of the South China Sea, including the West Philippine Sea, through its so-called ten-dash line.

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However, China’s claims were effectively invalidated by a July 2016 international tribunal ruling that stemmed from a case filed by Manila in 2013.

Despite this, China has continued encroaching on Philippine waters, maintaining its aggression and militarization even in areas within the Philippines’ territory in the West Philippine Sea.

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: China, West Philippine Sea

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