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HomePress ReleaseUS Condemns Chinese Aggression, Calls for Peace in Scarborough Shoal Dispute

US Condemns Chinese Aggression, Calls for Peace in Scarborough Shoal Dispute

The United States has strongly criticized China’s repeated harassment of Philippine vessels near Scarborough Reef (Panatag Shoal), emphasizing that such actions are detrimental to regional peace and stability.

While traveling to Panatag Shoal (Bajo de Masinloc) to deliver essential supplies to Filipino fishermen, Chinese ships, including those of the China Coast Guard (CCG) and Chinese Maritime Militia, recently engaged in aggressive acts against Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) and Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) vessels.

The US State Department’s Deputy Spokesperson, Vedant Patel, encouraged China to respect international law and each state’s right to navigate. Patel highlighted the value of using peaceful means to settle conflicts in conformity with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos).

A number of embassies in the Philippines, including those of Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan, Sweden, and the United Kingdom, conveyed serious concerns on China’s aggressive tactics. They emphasized how China’s actions against Philippine warships could lead to errors in judgment and jeopardize regional peace.

Ambassadors from a number of nations emphasized the need of upholding Unclos and finding peaceful solutions to disputes. They stressed the binding nature of international law, including the 2016 Arbitral Award, and denounced the use of force.

The Philippine ships were damaged in the incident, which involved Chinese coast guard ships firing water cannons at PCG and BFAR vessels. The safety of ships and crews has been impacted by the South China Sea tensions caused by the Chinese coast guard’s increased hostility.

In addition to stressing the significance of respecting the 2016 Arbitral Award, which struck down China’s broad claims in the South China Sea, the US reiterated its support for the Philippines. The decision of the Permanent Court of Arbitration emphasizes the importance of following international law and finding a peaceful solution.

The Philippines is still dedicated to its relief and aid efforts in the West Philippine Sea, even in the face of China’s assertive moves. But with the recent uptick in hostilities, diplomatic efforts to reduce tensions and guarantee maritime calm in the area are desperately needed.

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