China urges Philippines to stop hyping up maritime disputes

Li Weichao
2023-12-15 16:45:55

A Chinese military spokesperson on Friday reiterated China's indisputable sovereignty over Nansha Qundao, including Ren'ai Jiao, and their adjacent waters, urging the Philippines to stop stirring up trouble, hyping up the issue and making provocations at sea.

When responding to a media query over the latest Ren'ai Jiao incident, Zhang Xiaogang, a spokesperson for China's Ministry of National Defense, on Friday stressed that the Chinese military has lodged solemn representations and strongly protested to the Philippine side. 

The spokesperson pointed out that on December 10, disregarding repeated warnings by the Chinese side, the Philippine side intruded into adjacent waters of Ren'ai Jiao in China's Nansha Qundao in an attempt to send construction materials to the illegally grounded warship.

According to Zhang, the Philippine ship also deliberately rammed the China Coast Guard (CCG) vessels in a dangerous way, causing scratching, and some personnel of the Philippine military boarded the illegally grounded warship.

The CCG took the necessary measures to restrain it and the on-site handling was professional, restrained, reasonable and lawful, he added.

Zhang said the Philippines has gravely violated the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) and undermined peace and stability in the South China Sea.

Zhang added that some certain non-regional countries with ill intention instigated the situation and fanned the flames. He urged the countries concerned to immediately cease their violations and provocations and to avoid further escalation and deterioration of the situation.

China will continue to take the necessary measures to firmly safeguard its territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests, the spokesperson stressed.

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