Rappler joined volunteers from the Atin Ito activist coalition, the first-ever civilian convoy to the West Philippine Sea, on Sunday, December 10. This, despite the ongoing harassment by Chinese maritime militia ships and Chinese Coast Guard vessels.
Atin Ito staged donation drives, including a concert, to gather supplies for West Philippine Sea “frontliners” – fisherfolk, soldiers stationed in Philippine outposts, and the Philippine Coast Guard.
The historic civilian convoy, which included fisherfolk groups, civil society groups, artists’ groups, religious and church groups, and youth groups, did not reach its destination due to Chinese ships “shadowing” MV Kapitan Felix Oca at around 3:40 pm on Sunday.
A total of four Chinese vessels were seen from the deck of MV Felix Kapitan Oca: one navy ship, two coast guard ships, and one maritime militia vessel.
Due to the “constant shadowing” of Chinese vessels, the MV Kapitan Felix Oca changed course to head back to El Nido. The ML Chowee, which was carrying supplies, went ahead and fulfilled its resupply mission to Lawak Island.
The MV Kapitan Felix Oca safely returned to the waters of El Nido on Monday morning, December 11. – Rappler.com
Reporter: Joann Manabat
Production specialist, video editor: Errol Almario
Producers: JC Gotinga, Cara Angeline Oliver
Supervising producer: Beth Frondoso