93% of Filipinos want PH to regain China-occupied islands

MANILA, Philippines – Nearly all Filipinos want the Philippines to regain China-occupied islands in the West Philippine Sea, said a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey released on Thursday, July 11.

According to the SWS survey, 93% of Filipino adults say "it is important that the Philippines regain control of the islands occupied by China in the West Philippine Sea."

This is higher than the 89% that agreed with the same statement in September 2018, and the 87% in June 2018.

The SWS survey was conducted from June 22 to 26 among 1,200 adults, with an error margin of ±3% for national percentages. It was a non-commissioned survey.

The SWS survey also found the following:

The survey period covered the aftermath of the sinking of a Filipino fishing boat by a Chinese ship in the West Philippine Sea, part of the South China Sea that belongs to the Philippines.

The release of the survey, meanwhile, comes on the eve of the 3rd anniversary of the Philippines' legal victory against China over the South China Sea.

The Hague ruling involves waters, not islands, but the ruling has implications on the country's claim over the disputed islands. President Rodrigo Duterte however has shelved the ruling in exchange for loans and grants from Beijing. – Rappler.com

Paterno R. Esmaquel II

Paterno R. Esmaquel II, news editor of Rappler, specializes in covering religion and foreign affairs. He obtained his MA Journalism degree from Ateneo and later finished MSc Asian Studies (Religions in Plural Societies) at RSIS, Singapore. For story ideas or feedback, email him at pat.esmaquel@rappler.com.