‘Not a friend’: Netizens hit China over sinking of Philippine boat

Rappler.com
Filipinos online demand that Malacañang defend the nation from threats of 'greedy traitors'

MANILA, Philippines – Filipinos online were furious when news broke out that a Chinese vessel rammed into a Philippine boat in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).

On Independence Day, June 12, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana announced that a Chinese vessel sank a Philippine fishing boat in Recto (Reed) Bank in the West Philippine Sea on June 9, and left the 22 Filipinos on board “at the mercy of the elements.”

Fortunately, they were rescued by a Vietnamese fishing vessel which happened to be in the same area. (READ: Sinking of Filipino vessel a ‘first’ in Philippines-China row)

Twitter user @nakilalawrence said that what happened just proved that “China is not a friend” – contrary to the claim of President Rodrigo Duterte and his officials.

{source}<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>A Chinese vessel sank a Filipino fishing boat on the West Philippine Sea and left the crew immediately after the incident. This is a signal that China is not a friend. They are belittling us in our own territory! </p>&mdash; Lawrence Nakila (@nakilalawrence) <a href=”https://twitter.com/nakilalawrence/status/1138814993858646017?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>June 12, 2019</a></blockquote><script async src=”https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>{/source}

Wilfred Halabi slammed the regional giant for hitting the Philippines “below the belt” with the latest incident.

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‘How long are we going to endure?’

The June 9 incident is the latest in a string of Chinese “harassment” of Filipino fishermen in the West Philippine Sea.

In 2018, Filipinos protested the harassment of Filipino fishermen by Chinese Coast Guard, who demanded their best catch after fishing in Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal off the coast of Zambales, in the West Philippine Sea. 

In March, Malacañang said it could not do anything about the continued harassment of Filipino fishermen in Panatag Shoal. (READ: China shooing away PH fishermen from Panatag Shoal? What can we do – Panelo)

How long are we going to suppress this? How long are we going to endure?” Elle Sibal asked.

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Einah Nina lamented the Duterte administration’s seeming subservience to the Asian giant. 

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‘Never turn a blind eye’

Following the latest incident, netizens urged the government and all Filipinos to resist being bullied.

Nicole Joy de Asis reminded everyone to “never turn a blind eye.”

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According to @Joannaaaabanana, Filipinos are being stripped of their right to sail in their own territory.

{source}<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”tl” dir=”ltr”>A CHINESE VESSEL SINKED A FILIPINO BOAT AT THE WEST PHILIPPINE SEA AND LEFT THE FISHERMEN THERE, FLOATING IN THE WATER. While most people are still in support of Duterte and China, tinatanggalan tayo ng karapatang mamangka sa sarili nating karagatan. Nasaan ang mga puso ninyo</p>&mdash; M A J (@Joannaaaabanana) <a href=”https://twitter.com/Joannaaaabanana/status/1138749380595310593?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>June 12, 2019</a></blockquote>
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Meanwhile, Arnel Andal asked Malacañang to defend the nation from all threats initiated by “greedy traitors.”

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‘Why hear this news just now?’

Some were also quick to wonder why reports on the incident were released only on the country’s 121st Independence Day, when it happened days earlier.

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Here are other reactions:

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{source}<a class=”twitter-timeline” href=”https://twitter.com/rapplerdotcom/timelines/1139077890107035649?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>PH boat sank – Curated tweets by rapplerdotcom</a> <script async src=”https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>{/source}

Some of the netizens’ reactions were triggered by the tweet of Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr in response to calls to seek support from the international community after the incident.

“Fuck the international community. It can be bought. This is our fight and in the end ours alone,” tweeted Locsin, as he dismissed the calls. (READ: Locsin on PH boat sinking: ‘Fuck the international community’) – Rappler.com

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