Manalo questions need to notify China on WPS activities

"Why would we notify?"

That was Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique Manalo's short and simple answer when asked about his comment on China's pronouncement that the Philippines must inform China first of its planned activities in the West Philippine Sea.

Manalo questioned China’s demand after Mao Ning, its Foreign Ministry spokesperson, said Beijing will only allow the Philippines to deliver supplies to the grounded BRP Sierra Madre in the Ayungin Shoal “if the Philippines notifies the Chinese side in advance.”

China is claiming the whole South China Sea, including the West Philippine Sea that is part of the Philippines' exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

Mao also reminded that Philippines must “not use this as an excuse for delivering construction materials in an attempt to permanently occupy” the Ayungin Shoal, where the Philippine ship is grounded.

“China’s position on the issue of Ren’ai Jiao (Ayungin Shoal) is clear,” she said.

On Friday, June 7, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) hit China’s attempt to block a medical evacuation of an ill military personnel on May 19, the same day it seized food package for the Filipino troops in the waters.

PCG spokesman Commodore Jay Tarriela called China Coast Guard’s action as “barbaric and inhumane,” adding it “has no place in our society.”