Philippine Coast Guard mentioned three Filipino fishermen died when their boat was hit and sank in a disputed sea.
Three Filipino fishermen died after their fishing boat was struck by a nonetheless unidentified overseas industrial vessel whereas crossing the South China Sea, the Philippine Coast Guard reported, and the nation’s president has promised a full investigation.
The incident occurred on Monday whereas the boat was transiting waters 85 nautical miles (157 km) northwest of the disputed Scarborough Shoal within the South China Sea, the coast guard mentioned in a press release on Wednesday.
Eleven crew members survived after the boat sank.
“We guarantee the victims, their households, and everybody that we’ll exert each effort to carry accountable those that are accountable for this unlucky maritime incident,” President Ferdinand Marcos Jr mentioned in a social media put up on Wednesday following the coast guard’s announcement.
“The incident remains to be beneath investigation to establish the main points and circumstances surrounding the collision between the fishing boat and a nonetheless unidentified industrial vessel,” Marcos Jr mentioned.
We’re deeply saddened by the deaths of the three fishermen, together with the captain of the fishing vessel. The incident remains to be beneath investigation to establish the main points and circumstances surrounding the collision between the fishing boat and a nonetheless unidentified industrial… pic.twitter.com/VKe1eUkiIy
— Bongbong Marcos (@bongbongmarcos) October 4, 2023
“At the moment, the Philippine Coast Guard is backtracking and checking all monitored vessels within the space as a part of its ongoing investigation,” he mentioned.
The Philippine Coast Guard didn’t elaborate on the incident or present particulars of the vessel it mentioned had rammed the Filipino crew.
Tensions within the disputed South China Sea have not too long ago flared after the Philippines mentioned it eliminated a 300-metre-long barrier put in by China’s Coast Guard close to the Scarborough Shoal, a chief fishing spot for Philippine boats and certainly one of Asia’s most contested maritime options.
The strategic shoal, named after a British cargo vessel that ran aground on the atoll within the 18th century, was seized in 2012 by China, which has maintained a relentless presence of coast guard and fishing trawlers there ever since.
America and the Philippines started annual joint naval warfare video games on Monday involving greater than a thousand sailors from the 2 allies. The annual “Samasama” (Tagalog for “Collectively”) workouts contain anti-submarine, floor and digital warfare drills off Manila and the south of Luzon, the primary island of the Philippines.
US Seventh Fleet chief Vice Admiral Karl Thomas informed sailors at a gap ceremony in Manila that the rights of all nations to make sure nationwide sovereignty had been “beneath assault every single day on the excessive seas”.
“There’s no higher means to make sure sovereignty and safety than to sail and to function collectively,” Thomas mentioned.
Requested at a information convention to whom he was referring, Thomas mentioned it was necessary to keep up the appropriate to sail by way of the world “free from worries about being attacked” or “intimidated”.