Press Release
June 10, 2018


Senator Richard J. Gordon condemned the harassment suffered by Filipino fishermen in the Panatag or Scarborough Shoal at the hands of Chinese Coast Guards patrolling the area.

Filipino fishermen fishing at the Panatag Shoal complained that Chinese Coast Guards in the area are getting some of their catch. Recently, too, a Chinese chopper hovered over a rubber boat deployed for a resupply mission of the Philippine military in Ayungin Shoal.

Gordon said the government should lodge a protest, adding that the Chinese Coast Guards are preying on the helpless fishermen who are are merely trying to make a living.

"We are freedom-loving people. These are marginalized people. Why are you doing this to the poor people who are just trying to make a living. This is what makes being friends with China nowadays difficult," he said.

The senator also said the Chinese leadership should exercise extreme control over their forces that are so-called patrol activities at the area, which is a common fishing ground for all the claimants.

Bajo de Masinloc or Panatag Shoalt is a disputed territory claimed by the People's Republic of China, the Republic of China (Taiwan), and the Philippines.

"The actions of the Chinese coast guards are more like the mulcting practices of rogue law enforcers victimizing helpless people. The Chinese leadership must exercise extreme control over their so-called patrol activities at this common fishing ground so that they won't resort to thievery. They are no different from the pirates of the olden times who prey of helpless victims," Gordon said.

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