In order to ensure that the Philippine Seas are protected against further foreign intrusion, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) said they had beefed up their presence West Philippine Sea (WPS), upon the instructions of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.
According to the PCG, Commandant Admiral Artemio Abu had tasked “one of the PCG Fleet’s largest maritime assets,” the BRP Teresa Magbanua (MRRV-9701) to the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG) on January 28.
It was learned that the BRP Magbanua crew boarded Filipino fishing boats in the waters in and around the KIG as they had advised Filipino fishermen and crew to inform them or to radio the PCG or Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) shore units should they need assistance due to foreign intrusion or harassment.
“As the summer season draws near, the PCG expects the number of Filipino fishing vessels that sail and fish in the WPS to greatly increase,” the PCG said.
“As the PCG steadily strengthens and increases its Maritime Patrol, Search and Rescue, and Law Enforcement operations in the WPS, it remains firmly committed to safeguarding Philippine interests and rights within the bounds of international law and conventions,” it added.
The move by the PCG was made after the February 6 laser-pointing incident between the Chinese coast guard and the PCG in Ayungin Shoal.
The Department of Foreign Affairs had filed a diplomatic protest against China.
President Marcos, had summoned Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian to discuss the issue.
During that incident, a Chinese Coast Guard pointed a military-grade laser at the PCG temporary blinding their crew.
China dismissed the PH claim saying that it was just a guidelight, a claim that irked the PCG and the DFA.
CurrentPH News Service