Daily News Portal

Philippines says China shot water cannon at its boats – BBC News


Video caption,

Watch: Chinese ships “fire water at Philippine vessels”

The Philippines has accused China of using water cannons to obstruct three of its vessels, in the latest territorial dispute between the two countries in the South China Sea.

Video footage shows Chinese ships firing powerful blasts of water towards the Philippine government vessels.

The Philippines called China’s actions “illegal and aggressive”.

The South China Sea is at the centre of a territorial dispute between China, the Philippines and other countries.

The incident happened near Scarborough Shoal, a flashpoint between the two countries. Beijing seized the shoal in 2012 and Chinese boats have since harassed Philippine fishermen in the area.

The National Task Force for the West Philippine Sea said that “Chinese Coast Guard ships utilised water cannons to obstruct” government vessels from delivering fuel and food supplies to fishing boats.

The agency said it “vehemently condemns the illegal and aggressive actions”.

Beijing said it had used what it called “control measures” on ships that had intruded into its waters.

On Sunday, the Philippines plans to send a Christmas convoy of around 40 boats to distribute gifts and other provisions to people on Thitu island, the Philippines’ largest occupied island in the South China Sea.

Friction between the two countries over competing sovereignty claims has increased since Ferdinand Marcos Jr became Philippine president last year.

Last month, the Philippines carried out two separate joint air and sea patrols with the US, and with Australia a few days earlier.

An international tribunal invalidated China’s claim to 90% of the South China Sea in 2016, but Beijing does not recognise the ruling and has been building islands in the disputed waters in recent years.

The contested waters have also become a naval flashpoint for China-US relations, and in October, US President Joe Biden warned that the US will defend the Philippines in case of any attack.

President Biden’s comments were made days after two collisions between Filipino and Chinese vessels in the waters.

Taiwan, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Brunei also claim parts of the sea.



Read More:Philippines says China shot water cannon at its boats – BBC News