Julian Felipe Ree-Photo courtesy of AFP (ctto)

MANILA – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has summoned Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian on Monday to express “utmost displeasure” over the presence of Chinese vessels off the Julian Felipe Reef.

“[T]he DFA reiterated the firm demand of the Philippines that China ensures the immediate departure of all its vessels from the area of Julian Felipe Reef and other maritime zones of the Philippines,” it said in a statement on Tuesday.

DFA Acting Undersecretary Elizabeth Buensuceso told Huang that Julian Felipe Reef lies within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone and that the Chinese vessels around the feature are a “source of regional tension.”

The official also said the July 2016 Award in the South China Sea Arbitration ruled that claims to historic rights, or other sovereign rights or jurisdiction that exceed the geographic and substantive limits of maritime entitlements under UNCLOS, are without lawful effect.

On the previous untoward statements of the Chinese embassy spokesperson on Defense Secretary Lorenzana, Buensuceso reminded the Chinese side of proper decorum and manners in the conduct of their duties as guests of the Philippines.

“Both sides affirmed the use of peaceful settlement of disputes in addressing their differences on the South China Sea/West Philippines issue,” the DFA said.

In a tweet on Tuesday, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. said there are still nine Chinese ships left in the area…(Click here to read more)

 

 

 

Source: https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1136613