South Asia and Beyond

100 Chinese Militia Vehicles Seen In Philippines Territorial Waters

 100 Chinese Militia Vehicles Seen In Philippines Territorial Waters

Over 100 Chinese militia vessels were seen swarming around the Philippines’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) last week, refusing to leave despite being ordered to do so, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) has said. During a week-long maritime patrol in the South China Sea, the PCG also detected a PLA Navy corvette class and two Chinese coast guard vessels in several Philippine-controlled areas. PCG vessels sent their rigid hull inflatable boats to disperse the Chinese militia vessels swarming near Julian Felipe Reef—within the country’s 200-mile EEZ—but to no avail. “No CMM [Chinese maritime militia] vessel reacted or made any attempt to vacate the area,” the coast guard said. The PCG said its vessels issued “numerous radio challenges” to some 18 Chinese militia vessels around Sabina Shoal in the Spratly Islands. Still, they refused to comply with the order. The PCG also claimed that a PLA Navy vessel crossed paths with its ships at a distance of seven nautical miles from Thitu Island in the Spratly Islands last week. The PLA ordered the two Philippine vessels to leave and warned of “a problem” if they failed to comply. In response, the PCG claimed the areas were under the Philippine jurisdiction and urged them to leave instead.


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