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Duterte ‘tolerating’ Chinese fishing in PH’s EEZ draws flak

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MANILA, Philippines – Hoping to get the government to side with them, the 22 fishermen who were abandoned at sea by Chinese crewmen in the Recto Bank maritime incident have asked President Rodrigo Duterte to bar Chinese fishermen from fishing within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

A country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) is an area which is beyond, and is adjacent to, a given country’s territorial seas. It extends no more than 200 nautical miles out from a country’s own coastlines.

In case of the Philippines, any marine resource available within a country’s EEZ is for the exclusive use and benefit of the Philippine government and the Filipino people.

The controversial Recto or Reed Bank is within the Philippine’s EEZ.

It is rich in marine resources that is why the so-called “Recto 22” wants the government to insist Philippine’s exclusive rights in the area.

However, President Duterte said he will not bar the Chinese from fishing in Recto Bank “for friendship’s sake” when asked if he would prevent the Chinese from doing so.

“I don’t think that China would do that. Why? Because we’re friends. And they are of the same view that that should not result in any bloody confrontation,” the President told reporters on June 26.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo confirmed the President’s statement.

“Kasi friends nga daw. Kung friends, ‘di magbibigayan kayo, (Because we’re friends. Friends share with each other), Panelo said.

But Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said the government cannot allow Chinese fishermen to fish in the Philippine’s EEZ because “it will violate the Constitution.”

Carpio explained: “The Constitution mandates, The State shall protect the nation’s marine wealth in its exclusive economic zone, and reserve its use and enjoyment exclusively to Filipino citizens.”

He added that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has the specific task to be “the protector of the people” as mandated by the Constitution and to “secure the sovereignty of the state and the integrity of the national territory.”

“The Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces is the President, who has the constitutional duty to direct the Armed Forces is the President, who has the constitutional duty to direct the Armed Forces to protect the nation’s marine wealth in its Exclusive Economic Zone,” Carpio explained further.

Senator Panfilo Lacson, meanwhile, pointed out in his tweet that the word ‘friend’ is not stated in the Constitution criticizing the President’s remarks allowing the Chinese to enjoy resources in the country’ archipelagic waters.

Somebody, please help me find the word “friends” below:

Professor Jay Batongbacal, for his part, said the President’s stance on the issue is tantamount to ‘renouncing’ Philippine’s victory against China granted by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in 2016 which ruled in favor of the Philippines as having the sovereign rights over the disputed territory in the West Philippine Sea. (Yahoo News PH)

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Another quake rattles Mindanao, hours after 6.3-magnitude shock

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MANILA—A 5.3-magnitude earthquake struck Davao Oriental early Thursday, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said, hours after a 6.3-magnitude tremor rattled parts of Mindanao.

The moderate tremor occurred at 4:53 a.m. at a depth of 120 kilometers northeast of Manay town.

Instrumental intensity 3 was recorded in Alabel, Sarangani, intensity 2 in Tupi and General Santos City in South Cotabato, and intensity 1 in Kiamba, Sarangani.

Phivolcs said the temblor was not an aftershock of the 6.3-magnitude earthquake that hit Tulunan, North Cotabato on Wednesday night.

The second quake was not expected to cause damage, but will spawn aftershocks, it added.

The earthquake in North Cotabato was felt in parts of Mindanao that left at least 4 people dead and dozens injured. Via ABS-CBN News

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4 dead in Pampanga car crash

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PAMPANGA, Philippines – Four people died after their car crashed into an open canal and caught fire along the main avenue of Clark Freeport Zone here in the wee hours of Tuesday, October 15.

The Police Regional Office 3 (PRO3) said in a statement on Wednesday, October 16, that the fatal “self accident” happened along the eastbound lane of Manuel A. Roxas Avenue around 3:15 am on Tuesday.

The initial investigation showed that the vehicle, a white Hyundai Accent, was traversing the avenue on its way out of Clark when it plunged into a canal and caught fire.

Police said the 4 occupants of the car were burned to death. Authorities have yet to identify the victims as of posting.

Firefighters from the Clark Development Corporation’s Public Safety Department were able to put out the fire by 3:25 am on Tuesday.

Police received the report about the fatal accident at 4:30 am and dispatched a team from the Scene of Crime Operatives to investigate the crash site.

Investigators looked into overspeeding as among the possible causes of the crash, Rappler reports.

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Lalamove Philippines expanding services to Pampanga

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Lalamove Philippines on Wednesday announced plans to expand its delivery services to Pampanga, citing a growing need for logistics services in areas outside of Metro Manila.

On the sidelines of the AVCJ Private Equity & Venture Forum, Lalamove Philippines managing director Dannah Majarocon said the company is looking to expand to several areas.

“We are looking at moving into another city by the first half of next year. It’s a toss-up, but we are leaning more towards Pampanga because it makes a lot of sense,” she said in an interview with GMA News Online.

“Our business clients in Manila want to have items delivered all the way to Pampanga and from Pampanga to Manila, plus you have another port that is in that area,” she said.

Lalamove offers delivery services in over 100 cities across Mainland China, Southeast Asia, and India. In the Philippines alone, the company has over 45,000 partner drivers catering to clients in Manila and Cebu.

“Eventually, we will move into other cities further south. We’re still deciding if we’re gonna go Davao or Iloilo, but the most logical next phase for us will be where the central business districts are,” said Majarocon.

The company is banking on the growing need for logistics services, as it has continued to register positive growth in terms of delivery orders.

“It’s hard to fully determine or to fully attribute if it’s because of traffic because the growth of Lalamove has continuously compounded every single week, every single month, ever since we started here,” she said.

“Growth has been ‘exponentially fantastic’ for lack of a better term, and I would attribute that more because we are addressing a need in the market,” Majarocon added. —GMA News

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