As one cutter departs, another deploys to maintain Coast Guard presence in Western Pacific – News

YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — As the Coast Guard cutter Bertholf concluded six months deployed in the Western Pacific, its sister ship, the cutter Stratton, left its homeport in California on Wednesday to take its place, according to the Coast Guard. While operating in the Pacific, under the aegis of the 7th Fleet, the Bertholf sailed with a Navy guided-missile destroyer through the Taiwan Strait, the first Coast Guard cutter to do so. It also sailed through contentious waters of the East China Sea and exercised with ships…

Crew of Filipino fishing boat say Chinese trawler deliberately rams vessel, sinking it; Beijing denies ‘hit-and-run’ incident, SE Asia News & Top Stories

MANILA – It was midnight on June 9. Mr Junel Insigne had already claimed his small corner on the 14-tonne, wooden outrigger boat that had taken him and his crew of 21 fishermen more than 150km from their seaside town in Occidental Mindoro province, in the Philippines. As he began to doze off, he heard the men yelling. A much-bigger vessel was bearing down on them. He stood up and tried to start his boat’s engine. But it was too late. There was a loud crash. His boat, the Gem-Vir,…

Sea militia attacks could trigger US obligations under defense treaty

Sea militia attacks could trigger US obligations under defense treaty Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) – June 16, 2019 – 12:00am MANILA, Philippines — Foreign government-sanctioned attacks initiated by militia or armed civilians in the South China Sea may trigger the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) of the United States and the Philippines, US ambassador to Manila Sung Kim said. Kim, in an interview with “The Chiefs” aired on Cignal TV’s One News on Friday night, reiterated the US commitment to honor the provisions of the treaty, which binds the…

Satellite data show China ship not ‘besieged’ by Filipino boats

‘What 7-8 vessel swarm of night-marauding Filipino fishing boats is China talking about?’ says maritime law expert Jay Batongbacal Published 9:02 PM, June 15, 2019 Updated 10:05 PM, June 15, 2019 RECTO BANK. This Google Earth screenshot, provided by maritime law expert Jay Batongbacal, shows that boats ‘were spread over the wide area’ of Recto Bank in the evening of June 9, 2019. The two boat-icons closest to each other have been estimated to be 3-5 nautical miles (about 7-9 kilometers) apart. Screenshot from Jay Batongbacal MANILA, Philippines – Satellite…

Locsin calls West Philippine Sea a ‘juvenile’ name

‘That is how we lose territory, by dropping technical colonial names…and renaming them,’ says Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr Published 6:27 PM, June 15, 2019 Updated 6:27 PM, June 15, 2019 TOP DIPLOMAT. Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr delivers a speech during the inauguration of the Chinese consulate general in Davao City on October 28, 2018. Photo by Manman Dejeto/Rappler MANILA, Philippines – Foreign Secretary Teodoro “Teddyboy” Locsin Jr on Saturday, June 15, criticized as “juvenile” the use of the name “West Philippine Sea” to refer to part of the…

Izumo arrives in Vietnam – The Japan News

Jiji Press HANOI (Jiji Press) — Two destroyers of the Maritime Self-Defense Force, including the Izumo helicopter flattop, arrived at Cam Ranh International Port in southern Vietnam on Friday. The MSDF ships’ visit to the key strategic Vietnamese port relatively near the disputed Spratly and the Parcel islands in the South China Sea is aimed at highlighting defense cooperation between Japan and Vietnam and deterring China’s militarization of the sea, observers said. The Izumo anchored in Cam Ranh Bay for the second time, after its first visit there two years…