Dispatch from Crame No. 70

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The attack by a Chinese naval vessel (apparently a navy ship, and not a coast guard vessel), as confirmed by Rep. Gary Alejano after interviewing the fishermen, is a worrisome development.

This incident mirrors China’s newfound daring and boldness to discard of the conventional coast guard actions in enforcing its territorial claims. Such escalates the situation in the Spratlys, and should be strongly condemned by the Philippine government.

The real potential threat is staring us in the face, and government’s indecisiveness in dealing with this threat that China brings to our national security could lead us to a tipping point where we could lose our rights to these maritime territories by default.

We should neither wait indecisively, nor continue kowtowing to China, while China continues to chip away at our rights and on our hold on these territories.

At the very least, our leaders must demand respect from their Chinese counterparts.

-Sen. Leila M. de Lima

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