News Release

PCG stops China from exploratory activities on Escoda Shoal – PCG

The presence of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) on Escoda Shoal has sent a strong message that the Philippines is not ‘helpless’ against the illegal activities of China in the West Philippine Sea (WPS).

This was proven by the PCG after it stopped China’s plans to build an artificial island in Escoda Shoal, according to PCG spokesman for WPS Commodore Jay Tarriela.

In a news forum in Quezon City on Saturday, Tarriela said the PCG effectively stopped the Chinese Coast Guard (CCG) from their illegal activities on Escoda Shoal.

“The mere fact that the Philippine Coast Guard has prevented [the] Chinese government in continuing their island reclamation in Sabina Shoal (Escoda Shoal) means we remain to be effective. The state has the sovereign rights over these waters,” Tarriela said.

“Natigil sila, basically dahil simula noong nandiyan tayo for 26 days wala naman na silang nagawang pagda-dump kung hindi nagdi-deploy na lang sila ng mga divers doing the measurement and all. Wala naman tayong nakita dito na actual na dina-dump na nila,” he added.

“Our mere presence has already deterred China in doing such illegal action,” he said.

Tarriela said that they have deployed its BRP Teresa Magbanua, which is now on its 26th day on Escoda Shoal to ensure that China will not be able to resume its illegal activities in Philippine waters.

He said the PCG is hoping “to flex more muscles” in preventing the deployment of Chinese research vessels, Chinese maritime militia boats and CCG ships on Philippine waters with the expected arrival of a 97-meter vessel from Japan.

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. requested the Japanese government for the acquisition of the said vessel. | PND