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Stronger call for China to stop aggression in WPS sought

June 19, 2023 Camille P. Balagtas 142 views

SENATOR Risa Hontiveros has joined the recent call of retired Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio for a stop to China’s aggressive acts in the West Philippine Sea.

In Senate Resolution 659, Hontiveros, called on the Philippine government, through the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), to sponsor a resolution before the UN General Assembly that will call on China to stop its harassment of Filipino vessels in the WPS.

“As far back as 2016, through the landmark Arbitral ruling, it has been established that there was no legal basis for China to claim historic rights over Filipino resources. It has also been proven that China breached its obligations under international law when it violated our sovereign rights over our continental shelf and exclusive economic zone. This is a clear and unequivocal decision.

The Hague Ruling will never be diminished by China’s antagonistic and perpetual non-compliance,” Hontiveros said.

Through her filing on Monday, Hontiveros also hoped to honor the legacy of the late Senator Rodolfo Biazon, a staunch advocate of the country’s interests in the WPS. Biazon’s remains were transferred to the Senate this morning for his necrological services.

“Former Sen. Biazon is known for his unwavering advocacy of the interests of the Philippines, especially in the WPS. In 2021, he called on the government to make a clear stand on the disputed territories and urged the National Security Council to map out a united national position on the issue. His commitment to uphold the integrity of our territorial waters inspired this senate resolution,” Hontiveros stressed.

The senate resolution further states that “a UN General Assembly Resolution, while not legally binding, carry significant political weight and serve as expressions of the will and consensus of the international community, with the potential to shape international norms, influence national policies, and provide guidance for the work of other UN organs, specialized agencies, and regional organizations.”

Hontiveros is a staunch advocate of exhausting all diplomatic and political remedies when it comes to the West Philippine Sea.