'Yolanda' kicks out Chinese from Ayungin Reef, Philippine Marines on grounded ship safe By: Jaime Sinapit, InterAksyon.com November 11, 2013 9:45 AM BRP Sierra Madre
InterAksyon.com The online news portal of TV5
MANILA - Super typhoon Yolanda has sent home Chinese maritime and Navy vessels at the Ayungin Reef in Palawan, while the half a dozen Philippine Marines on board a rusting and grounded World War II-era ship are safe, a source told InterAksyon.com.
This effectively ends the standoff between the two countries some 100 nautical miles from the island of Palawan.
Ayungin is part of the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG) in the West Philippine Sea (WPS). China claims the reef is part of its territory, more than a thousand nautical miles from its nearest 200-nautical-mile exclusive economic zone (EEZ).
“They’re safe,” said a senior officer of the Philippine Marines guarding the reef on board the shipwreck BRP Sierra Madre (Landing Ship Tank 57). The Philippine Marine official requested that he not be named because he is not authorized to give any statement regarding operational activities in the West Philippine Sea.
“Hindi naman sila naanod (They were not washed away),” the source added.
The source said the Chinese Navy ship, maritime ships, and fishing vessels left Ayungin two or three days before Yolanda struck the country.
“As of now, we’ve no report that the Chinese ships have returned to Ayungin. Dahil siguro may paparating na naman na isa pang bagyo (Maybe because another storm is approaching the country),” he said.
In June this year, Chinese vessels entered Ayungin and had maintained a presence in the area, as what they did in Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal located in Masinloc, Zambales in April 2012.
The territorial dispute between the two countries is being heard by an international arbitration court in Hamburg.
4 Chinese ships back at Ayungin By Jaime Laude (The Philippine Star) | Updated February 22, 2014 - 12:00am
MANILA, Philippines - Four Chinese surveillance ships have returned to Ayungin Shoal after several months of absence.
A security official who asked not be named said two of the Chinese ships have the 306 and 363 markings on their bows, while the two others look like frigates.
“They’ve been spotted near Ayungin since last week,” the security official said.
Another source said the Chinese Navy is again maintaining an active presence in the Spratlys.
“They were gone, but they have returned,” the source said.
Filipinos continue to fish in the area of Ayungin despite the presence of the Chinese ships. Headlines ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1
Armed Forces chief Gen. Emmanuel Bautista has vowed to defend Filipino fishermen against any “terror or intimidation” in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).
In an interview with the Associated Press, Bautista said Chinese claims to islands just off the Philippine coast are “of course absolute nonsense.”
“Just take a look at the map,” he said.
“Our fishermen will continue fishing, assert their rights on those areas. They should go on with their lives as fishermen, not bow down to terror or intimidation.
“To the best that we can, we will support them, especially if there is more aggression and unnecessary use of force,” he added.
Bautista said that decision risked angering China in the short term, but that it was the right course of action.
“They are a big country, we are a small country,” he said. “What can we do? Bring it to court, solve it through peaceful means.”
Ayungin Shoal serves as a supply route from mainland Palawan to settlers in Kalayaan town in Pag-Asa Island.
Kalayaan Mayor Eugenio Bito-onon Jr. said: “With its vast resources, who can prevent China from implementing its illegal reclamation projects in the region?”
China claims Ayungin as part of its maritime domain, although it is located very near Palawan and within the territorial waters of the Philippines.
In May last year, Chinese ships took up positions near Ayungin Shoal and only left the area after a series of typhoons struck the country.
Since then, Chinese ships were seen in the area while sailing south or north, apparently on patrol.
China has been trying to occupy the Ayungin despite a detachment of Philippine Marines stationed on the grounded BRP Sierra Madre.
New envoy here Sunday
New Chinese ambassador Zhao Jianhua is set to arrive on Sunday, diplomatic sources said yesterday.
Zhao, former ambassador to Liberia, replaces Ma Keqing whose tour of duty ended last December.
Zhao worked at the Asia desk of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China, and his first ambassadorial assignment in Africa was to Liberia.
At an Investiture Ceremony on Dec. 6, 2013, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf admitted Zhao into the Humane Order of African Redemption, with the grade of Knight Great Band.
The Philippines has filed a case against China before the arbitral tribunal of the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), challenging excessive claims in the South China Sea.
China has refused to participate in the arbitration, insisting on bilateral discussions on the territorial dispute and calling on the Philippines to meet it halfway to jointly maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea. – With AP, Pia Lee-Brago
DFA statement on China’s allegation that the PH agreed to pull out of Ayungin Shoal Published: March 14, 2014.
The Department of Foreign Affairs’ statement on China’s allegation that the Philippines agreed to pull out of the Ayungin Shoal
[Released on March 14, 2014]
The BRP Sierra Madre, a commissioned Philippine Naval Vessel, was placed in Ayungin Shoal in 1999 to serve as a permanent Philippine Government installation in response to China’s illegal occupation of Mischief Reef in 1995. This was prior to the signing of the Declaration of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea in 2002.
The Philippines reiterates that Ayungin Shoal is part of its continental shelf over which the Philippines has sovereign rights and jurisdiction.
dfa.gov.ph This entry was posted in Briefing Room, Department of Foreign Affairs. Bookmark the permalink. 翻译： 对中国指菲律宾同意撤出仁爱礁，菲律宾外交部的声明 发布时间：2014年3月14日
菲律宾海军舰艇BRP Sierra Madre，于1999年被安排在Ayungin浅滩，作为菲律宾政府在该处的一个永久安装，应对中国于1995年非法占领美济礁。这是在2002年南海各方行为宣言的签署之前的行为。
Philippines rejects Chinese demand to remove ship Associated Press March 14, 2014
The Philippines on Friday rejected a Chinese demand that it remove a grounded navy ship from a disputed shoal in the South China Sea, saying the vessel is a permanent government outpost.
China’s coast guard prevented two Philippine civilian vessels from delivering supplies to the rusting ship at Second Thomas Shoal on Sunday, escalating tensions in the area. The Philippines and the U.S. have called Beijing’s action provocative. The shoal is called Ayungin in the Philippines and Ren’ai Reef in China.
Ayungin supply drops to continue By Alexis Romero, The Philippine Star Posted at 03/19/2014 3:27 AM | Updated as of 03/19/2014 3:27 AM
MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines will continue to send supplies to its troops on Ayungin (Second Thomas) Shoal despite fresh warnings from China, which has set up a naval blockade in the area.
A security official said the Philippines has the right to support its military forces on the shoal as the area is well within its exclusive economic zone (EEZ).
“We reiterate that (Ayungin Shoal) is within our EEZ. It is but our duty to provide for our own troops. These are Filipino settlements,” said the official, who requested anonymity because of lack of authority to talk on the matter.
The official said the Philippines has been abiding by the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, which seeks to resolve the territorial dispute peacefully.
China and members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) signed the declaration in 2002 but specific and binding guidelines have yet to be approved.
On Monday, China demanded the Philippines pull out its troops from Ayungin Shoal, calling its occupation of the area illegal.
“The Chinese government’s attitude on maintaining the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is unwavering. We will never tolerate the Philippines’ illegal occupation of Ren’ai reef (Ayungin Shoal),” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said in a press conference in Beijing.
“China is on high alert for the Philippines taking more proactive acts in the South China Sea. The Philippines must accept responsibility for the consequences of what will happen,” Lei added.