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Resolution condemning China sea aggression filed at Senate

MANILA, Philippines — With Chinese aggression at sea intensifying, Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva has filed a resolution expressing the Senate’s outrage and condemning the continued “illegal and dangerous actions” of the China Coast Guard and maritime militia in Philippine waters.

Through Resolution 980, Villanueva also urged the government to take legal and diplomatic actions against China, which has become bolder in asserting its claims in the West Philippine Sea.

“To express the sense of the Senate strongly condemning the unprovoked aggression, continued harassment and illegal and dangerous actions in the WPS by the CCG and the Chinese maritime militia, and urging and supporting the executive branch of the Philippine government to exert all legal and diplomatic countermeasures against the People’s Republic of China in asserting and securing the Philippines’ sovereign rights in the West Philippine Sea,” Villanueva said, explaining his move to file the resolution.

On March 25, President Marcos signed Executive Order 57 “to comprehensively tackle” what he called cross-cutting issues that impact on the country’s national security and maritime jurisdiction.

Villanueva said in his resolution that while the presidential order includes the implementation of a response and countermeasure package, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), the Department of National Defense and other relevant government agencies should “exhaust and pursue all the necessary mechanisms, well within our rights, to put an end to the continued aggression and illegal activities of China in the WPS to protect our people and our national territory and ensure peace and stability in the region.”

He noted that on Aug. 1, the Senate adopted Resolution No. 79 condemning the continued harassment of Filipino fishermen by the Chinese and urging the DFA to bring international attention to the latest acts of Chinese provocations in the West Philippine Sea as well as rally support for the implementation of the 2016 arbitral award that nullified China’s massive claims in the West Philippine Sea.

Sen. Risa Hontiveros, for her part, said there was nothing surprising about former presidential spokesman