Make Duterte pay for treating UNCLOS victory “a mere scrap of paper”

The Filipino people must uphold the decision of the International Arbitration Tribunal (IAT) issued exactly five years ago today which dismissed China’s “9-dash line” claim and recognized the seas, islands and marine features within Philippine exclusive economic zone and extended continental shelf in line with the United Nations Convention on the Laws of the Seas (UNCLOS).

The Filipino people must make the national traitor Rodrigo Duterte pay for betraying the country’s interest and throwing the IAT’s decision in the wastebasket. He has repeatedly refer to it as a “mere scrap of paper.” He kowtowed to China and its refusal to recognize the decision. He is a coward who does not know how to defend the country’s sovereignty and national dignity.

With Duterte as Philippine president, China’s military forces and fishing fleets have aggressively encroached on Philippine waters. China now has at least seven military facilities located at the Kagitingan Reef, Calderon Reef, Burgos Reef, Mabini Reef, Panganiban Reef, Zamora Reef, McKennan Reef where it has deployed its military troops, military aircraft, marine vessels, communication stations and so on.

Duterte has acquiesced to the massive fishing operations in the Julian Felipe Reef and other areas within the Philippines’ EEZ conducted by fleets of Chinese fishing vessels. These operations are supported by Chinese Coast Guard vessels which threaten and drive away Filipino fishermen denying them access to Philippine marine resources. Duterte has allowed China to plunder and destroy as much as ₱1.3 trillion worth of resources and marine wealth.

In the face of widespread condemnation for failure to defend the country’s territory, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine Coast Guard have conducted aerial surveys and sea patrols to drive out Chinese vessels illegaly entering the Philippine exclusive waters. These token acts, however, lose any meaning or significance under Duterte’s overall policy of subservience to China.

The Filipino people must vigorously resist China’s encroachment in Philippine territorial waters and plunder of marine resources and demand that the decision of the IAT be upheld and respected. The Filipino people must gather international support to help push back big bully China through diplomatic, political and economic means.

Having betrayed the nation’s sovereignty, Duterte must be immediately removed from power in order to prevent him from continuing to use his powers to the interests of China’s growing power and impingement on the country’s rights.

Make Duterte pay for treating UNCLOS victory “a mere scrap of paper”