Huangyan Island under virtual occupation by China: Philippine FM

2013-01-21 06:47:29 GMT2013-01-21 14:47:29(Beijing Time)  SINA.com

Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario has confirmed a former diplomat's claim that Huangyan Island is under China's control, according to a report on malaya.com.

“The shoal is under virtual occupation by China,” said former foreign undersecretary and former Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations Lauro Baja.

Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario confirmed this, saying, “In a subministerial consultation, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Fu Ying had said to our people that China’s presence was permanent and they had no intention of withdrawing their ships from the vicinity.”

Asked about the Philippines’ response to China’s declaration it has no intentions of pulling out their ships from Panatag shoal, Del Rosario said, “We are reviewing all our options in accordance with our three track approach encompassing the political, legal and diplomatic means.”

Philippine President Aquino has refused to discuss publicly his efforts on the issue because he said doing so would be “giving the other side a preview of everything that we will do.”

He said, though, in October at a forum at the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines that the matter “is still being studied by our consultants.”

Philippine experts point to two options available to Manila: the military option—which is not really an option considering the inferior state of the Philippine Navy compared with China’s navy—and the legal option.

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Editor: Mei Jingya
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