‘Dangerous manoeuvres’ by the China Coast Guard caused a collision in the South China Sea, according to the Philippines

During the resupply operation for Philippine troops in the South China Sea on Tuesday, March 5, the Philippines accused China’s coast guard of engaging in “dangerous manoeuvres” that resulted in a collision between its coast guard ship and a Chinese vessel. Speaking on social media platform X, Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) spokesman Jay Tarriela stated that the PCG vessel had minimal structural damage. Tarriela posted a video of the ships’ bows scraping each other on social media, along with the statement, “Their reckless and illegal actions led to a collision.”

 

One of two coast guard ships supporting a mission to deliver supplies for a small contingent of Filipino soldiers stationed at a warship Manila grounded on the Second Thomas Shoal in 1999 to bolster claims to sovereignty was the PCG vessel. However, China’s coast guard claimed that it had to impose control measures since the Philippine warships had unlawfully entered the waters around the shoal, which it refers to as Renai Reef.

 

The Second Thomas Shoal is part of China’s claimed territory in the South China Sea. The country has put patrol boats there, along with “Chinese maritime militia” as Manila calls them, and they were also there during the resupply mission. The Philippines and China have been embroiled in a territorial dispute in the South China Sea since 2016, when the Permanent Court of Arbitration ruled that China’s claims lacked legal support. Tuesday’s incident was the most recent in a string of run-ins between the two countries. Beijing disagrees with that decision.

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