Groups assail Duterte’s failure to uphold 3-year-old arbitration ruling favoring PH

Photo by Janess Ann J. Ellao/Bulatlat

As a result of Duterte’s refusal to uphold the country’s sovereignty on its exclusive economic zone, China has been able to complete the installation of its military bases in seven reefs that are within the waters being claimed by the Philippines.

By JANESS ANN J. ELLAO
Bulatlat.com

MANILA — “Xi sells seashells from our seashores.”

This was the creative take of protesters before the Chinese consulate in Makati as they commemorate the third year since the favorable ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration, disputing China’s nine-dash claim over the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone in the West Philippine Sea.

At least 300 protesters joined this morning’s program, carrying Philippine flags and creative placards denouncing China’s intrusion in the West Philippine Sea.

In a fiery speech, PINAS co-convenor and former Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares said the proposed charter change will pave the way for more Chinese intrusion not just in the West Philippine Sea but also in the country’s economic and military affairs.

The Philippine victory, Colmenares noted, “could have been used to galvanize many other countries to oppose China expansion” over the disputed waters, which President Duterte refused.

Photo by Janess Ann J. Ellao/Bulatlat

As a result of Duterte’s refusal to uphold the country’s sovereignty on its exclusive economic zone, China has been able to complete the installation of its military bases in seven reefs that are within the waters being claimed by the Philippines.

Among the most affected are indigenous peoples who are facing displacement from their ancestral domains to favor the construction of dams from loans based on lopsided deals with China.

A 60-year-old businesswoman, Margie Reyes, saw today’s protest action in Facebook and arrived with her friend, as she could no longer take the Philippine government’s wrongdoings.

She told Bulatlat, “we have three branches in the government to supposedly serve as check and balance. But this is long gone. It no longer exists. It is now up to the people to do checks and balances and promote national consciousness.” (http://bulatlat.com)

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