China coast guard says it took measures against Philippine vessels at Second Thomas Shoal

March 5, 2024 - 10:41 AM
Philippine supply boat
A Philippine supply boat sails near a Chinese Coast Guard ship during a resupply mission for Filipino troops stationed at a grounded warship in the South China Sea, October 4, 2023. (Reuters/Adrian Portugal/File Photo)

BEIJING — China’s coast guard said on Tuesday that it took control measures against Philippine vessels that illegally intruded into waters adjacent to the Second Thomas Shoal, which is a disputed atoll in the South China Sea.

The Coast Guard statement said the incident happened near waters adjacent to Renai Reef, also known as the Second Thomas Shoal, an area in the South China Sea that has seen numerous run-ins by China’s coast guard and Philippine vessels over the past few months.

A resupply mission for Philippine troops stationed at a grounded warship in Second Thomas Shoal is underway, the Philippine military said in a statement on Tuesday.

The China Coast Guard issued a brief statement on the latest incident between the countries along with other past coast guard actions, including a link to what it called the “illegal invasion of Scarborough Shoal” on February 23.

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In that incident it said a China Coast Guard ship took necessary measures to drive a Philippine vessel away in accordance with the law.

China claims sovereignty over most of the South China Sea, a claim that cuts into the exclusive economic zones (EEZ) of Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia. The Permanent Court of Arbitration in 2016 found China’s claims had no legal basis.

— Reporting by Bernard Orr and Shanghai newsroom; Editing by Chris Reese and Michael Perry