Philippines protests China’s illegal confiscation of fishing devices

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Manila, Aug. 21, 2020 (dpa/Naija247news) The Philippines on Friday filed a diplomatic protest against China for allegedly confiscating fish aggregating devices installed by Filipino fishermen in a shoal in the disputed South China Sea, the Foreign Affairs Department said.
According to the department, the Chinese coast guard seized the devices, locally called payaos, from Scarborough Shoal in May.
“The Philippines also resolutely objected to China’s continuing illicit issuance of radio challenges Philippine aircraft conducting legitimate regular maritime patrols in the West Philippine Sea, referring to the South China Sea by its Philippine name,” it said.
However, no other details were made available about the incidents.
Scarborough Shoal, also known to the Chinese as Huangyan Dao or Democracy Reef, is located 230 kilometres from the Philippines’ North-Western coast.
The shoal was the site of a stand-off between Philippine and Chinese Government ships in April 2012.

China later took control of the area, often chasing away Filipino fishermen.
The incident prompted Manila in January 2013 to file an arbitration case against China, questioning Beijing’s sweeping claims to the disputed sea, a key shipping lane believed to be rich in mineral and marine resources.
In July 2016, the Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration ruled Beijing has no legal or historic basis to its claim over the South China Sea, which is also claimed in part by Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei.

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