At least 82 Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) alumni belonging to different classes have signed a statement calling on the Government to use all available diplomatic and legal tools to resist China’s creeping invasion of the West Philippine Sea (WPS).
MANILA — ADMU high school classes of 1966, 1970, and the Management Engineering class of 1971, in a joint statement, says the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte must form and implement a robust strategy to counter the actions of China in the disputed region of the West Philippine Sea.
“Denouncing the administration’s policy of ‘total surrender to China’, the alumni proposed the employment of ‘the full range of legal, diplomatic and other tools at our disposal to implement the course of action,” says the joint statement.
“They recalled that the UNCLOS arbitral tribunal sitting at the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague had ruled with finality in 2016 that China’s nine-dash line claim which covered about 80 percent of our country’s EEZ was ‘without factual or legal basis,’” the statement furthers.
Moreover, the alumni add that defending the country’s territory is a sacred duty the Government owes to the previous generations who have stood up against foreign incursion.
“Instead of asserting our rights under the landmark ruling, the present regime has declared it is a mere scrap of paper because China is allegedly in possession of the WPS,” it says.
A proactive resistance to China’s expansionism in the WPS is a “sacred duty” to “past generations that have shed their blood for our freedom and to future generations who will lose their patrimony and freedom if they failed to live up to their sacrosanct obligations.”
The National Task Force on the West Philippine Sea (NTF-WPS) has reported the presence of over 200 Chinese maritime militia vessels from March to April, near the Julian Felipe Reef in the West Philippine Sea. (AI/Headline PH)