The Latest: ACLU questions Rhode Island stopping NY cars

The Latest on the coronavirus pandemic. The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people, but for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death. TOP OF THE HOUR: — British PM Boris Johnson tests positive. — Kremlin: Official in presidential administration tests positive. — Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte will go into quarantine. ___ PROVIDENCE, R.I. — The American Civil Liberties Union of Rhode Island is questioning the constitutionality of Gov. Gina Raimondo’s directive allowing state police to…

Books on Vietnam’s sea, island sovereignty debut | Society

The collection of books on Vietnam’s sea and island sovereignty (Photo courtesy of the publishing house) Hanoi (VNA) – A collection of 20 books on Vietnam’s sea and island sovereignty has been released to the public.  Launched by the Information and Communications Publishing House, the books include studies, documents, legal and historical evidence affirming the sovereignty of Vietnam over the country’s seas and islands, including the Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagos. The two archipelagos hold strategic locations, and the country’s sovereignty over them is clearly reflected through…

Lorenzana: Pagasa Island dev’t delay not due to Chinese boats

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana rejected on Tuesday the observations of a United States-based think tank which said that the presence of Chinese boats allegedly disguised as militias was among the factors why development works in Pagasa Island in the West Philippine Sea face continuous delay. Lorenzana maintained that the natural features of the island and the bad weather made it hard for the contractor to finish the development of a beaching ramp and runway in Pagasa Island. “There was a big problem at the initial stage of the Pagasa…

Defense Chief denies Chinese presence hampers development on Pagasa Island » Manila Bulletin News

Published March 10, 2020, 4:59 PM By Martin Sadongdong Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana rejected on Tuesday the observations of a United States-based think tank that said the presence of Chinese boats allegedly disguised as militias was among the factors why development works on Pag-asa Island in the West Philippine Sea face continuous delay. A Filipino soldier patrols at the shore of Pagasa island (Thitu Island)(REUTERS/Ritchie B. Tongo/Pool/File Photo/File Photo / MANILA BULLETIN) Lorenzana maintained that the natural features of the island and the bad weather made it hard for the…

China Moves Advanced Rescue Ship To Disputed South China Sea Island

A Chinese rescue ship, the Nan Hai Jiu 115, is maneuvering around Fiery Cross Reef in the South China Sea, reported Radio Free Asia (RFA), a non-profit news site. The reason for the ship’s presence is unknown but thought to be “benign” or of a non-military nature. The vessel is considered one of China’s most advanced. It can carry out tasks like firefighting, oil spill clean-up, and emergency medical services. It is easily identified by its green-colored landing helicopter dock and heliport that can handle medium-sized helicopters. RFA used vessel-tracking…

South China Sea standoff: Beijing’s ‘sinister plan’ to take island off Philippines exposed | World | News

A key area of dispute between China and the Philippines is the Spratly Island chain located in the centre of the South China Sea, an area heavily militarised by Beijing. Described by many as “island fortresses”, China has engulfed the Spratly archipelago with man-made island bases. The moving of its aircraft carriers, airstrips and weapons into the region has earned the cluster of bases the nickname: “The Great Wall of Sand.” A leaked set of photos given to a Filipino newspaper showed just how elaborate China’s development of military bases…

PH rehab of Pag-asa Island facilities progressing, says US think tank

Construction on Pag-asa (Thitu) Island, February 13, 2020. CSIS ASIA MARITIME TRANSPARENCY INITIATIVE and MAXAR MANILA, Philippines — New satellite images released by an American think tank showed the progress of the Philippines’ rehabilitation of Pag-asa (Thitu) Island in the West Philippine Sea. Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI) said in a new report on Friday (March 6) that the construction of a beaching ramp and sheltered port appeared to have made significant progress. “Most of the dredging to the north is complete and it seems clear that this area is…

Chinese militia presence slowed down Pag-asa Island repairs — think tank

Chinese militia presence slowed down Pag-asa Island repairs — think tank MANILA, Philippines — The continuous presence of Chinese militia ships near Pag-asa Island in the West Philippine Sea likely played a role in the delay of repairs on the island, a Washington-based think tank reported. Philippine officials, however, blamed severe sea conditions due to stormy weather as the cause of delay of construction projects on one of the largest features in the Spratly Islands. Based on satellite imagery from PlanetLabs collected between Dec. 2, 2018 and March 2,…

Over 100 Chinese vessels seen near Pag-asa Island in West PH Sea – AFP

PAG-ASA ISLAND. Internationally known as Thitu Island, Pag-asa is the Philippines’ largest and only civilian-inhabited island in the Kalayaan Island Group in the West Philippine Sea. File photo from the Armed Forces of the Philippines MANILA, Philippines – More than 100 Chinese vessels were seen near Pag-asa (Thitu) Island in the West Philippine Sea in January and February this year, the military said. Some 136 individual vessels – appearing to be fishing boats – were spotted near the largest Philippine-held island among the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG), part of what’s…

The tiny island that’s key to China’s maritime ambitions

NEW YORK – Nobody would ever call Thitu Island a Pacific Ocean paradise. The second-largest of the chain of reefs, shoals and atolls in South China Sea known as the Spratly Islands, Thitu is a sunbaked 37-hectare rock, dotted with scruffy trees and long-abandoned military bunkers, eking out existence just a few feet above high tide. Yet obscure Thitu — known as Pag-asa (“Hope Island”) in the Tagalog language of the Filipinos who inhabit it — has become an object of desire in the increasingly contentious geopolitical dispute involving the…