What is the meaning of all these increasing military capabilities of China in the Spratlys? What is their real intention in building military installations on these islands? Are they preparing for something in the future?
Are they planning to claim more islands especially that they are exploring Philippine Rise which is beyond their territorial waters?
But looking on the brighter side, China’s militarization of artificial islands is a good thing somehow because President Duterte made a move to limit the scientific research on Philippine Rise to Filipinos; even though we ruminate that it is just a diversionary tactic of our President to not pay close attention to the West Philippine Sea. I still support the President’s decision that Filipinos should be the one leading the exploration on Philippine Rise.
I strongly believe that we, Filipinos, should be the one reaping benefits from our own natural resources and not other countries.
I salute the Armed Forces of the Philippines for asserting sovereignty over the northernmost island of our country on April 30, 2016, when it hoisted the Philippine flag in Mavulis Island, which is also prone to foreign incursions and is constantly facing threats of illegal occupation. There was also the underwater flag hoisting on June 12, 2017, to assert our patriotic ownership on this maritime zone and to raise awareness of the strategic value of Philippine Rise.
Thank you for always being there to assert our sovereignty and protect our waters!
MARION O. SANTOS, firstname.lastname@example.org
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