Philippines places buoys in parts of South China Sea to assert sovereignty

  • The Philippines has placed navigational buoys within its exclusive economic zone (EEZ) to assert sovereignty over the disputed Spratly Islands in the South China Sea, a coast guard spokesperson said on 14 May.
  • The step comes amid China’s increasingly aggressive actions in the South China Sea as Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos Jr pursues warmer ties with treaty ally the United States.
  • The Philippine Coast Guard said it set up five buoys carrying the national flag from 10-12 May in five areas within the 322km zone, including the Whitsun Reef, where hundreds of Chinese maritime vessels moored in 2021.
  • In May 22, the coast guard installed five navigational buoys on four islands in the Spratlys.
  • China’s claim of sovereignty over almost the entire South China Sea was invalidated by an international arbitration ruling in 2016.

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