China coast guard says Philippine personnel ignored warnings and ‘illegally’ landed on reef

March 21, 2024 - 6:40 PM
An aerial view shows the Philippine-occupied Thitu Island, locally known as Pag-asa, in the contested Spratly Islands, South China Sea, March 9, 2023. (Reuters/Eloisa Lopez)

 China’s coast guard said a number of Philippine personnel ignored its warnings and illegally landed on a reef that is part of the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea on March 21.

“China firmly opposes the Philippine act, which violates China’s territorial sovereignty, and undermines peace and stability in the South China Sea,” said a spokesperson for the coast guard in a statement on Thursday.

“We urge the Philippine side to immediately stop the infringements.”

— Reporting by Beijing newsroom; Editing by Christina Fincher