Домой United States USA — China Zambales execs admit: Can’t enforce ruling vs China

Zambales execs admit: Can’t enforce ruling vs China


Zambales provincial officials offered little relief to fishermen crying for help in enforcing the 2016 arbitral ruling against China’s sweeping claims to the South China Sea during a joint hearing held by the House committee on national defense and security, and the special committee on the West Philippine Sea here on Friday.
Gov. Hermogenes Ebdane Jr., a former national police chief and national security adviser, said that if the arbitration case against China was one-sided, “We can’t really enforce it.”
“That’s what people should understand. Filipinos must know that in the arbitral ruling, if a group doesn’t want to follow, we can’t force it,” Ebdane said during the dialogue with fishermen displaced by the China Coast Guard (CCG) and its maritime militia from Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal, also called Bajo de Masinloc.
China refused to participate in The Hague arbitration case and rejected the arbitral award.
The arbitral tribunal invalidated China’s historical claims as without legal basis and upheld the Philippines’ sovereign rights to its exclusive economic zone (EEZ), including the waters of the West Philippine Sea.
Masinloc Mayor Arsenia Lim said she recognized the longstanding maritime tensions between China and the Philippines in the WPS.
“I heard many complaints from the fishermen who continue to venture there (at Panatag),” Lim said.
The mayor said she had been “empowering all cooperatives,” including those of local fishermen, to help them in their livelihoods despite being displaced by the escalating tension in the WPS.
But Leonardo Cuaresma, president of the New Masinloc Fishermen Association, refuted Lim’s claims.
“It is not true that she supported all the fishermen because when she first served as our mayor, instead of supporting the current organizations, she created another organization, and that is all she is helping,” Cuaresma told the Inquirer.

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