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Protesters In Philippines Protest Against Chinese Aggression In South China Sea

Protesters in Manila trampled on an effigy of Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday as they condemned China’s “aggression” against the Philippines in the South China Sea.

The protesters marched towards the Chinese consulate in Manila, chanting “China leave!” while others called out China’s “aggression” against Filipino people in the South China Sea.

The Philippines and China have had a series of maritime run-ins, including an incident last month where China used water cannon to disrupt a Philippine supply mission to soldiers stationed on a grounded warship in the disputed Second Thomas Shoal.

“Our message is addressed to the Chinese government: move out of the West Philippine Sea, dismantle its illegal structures … recognise the 2016 arbitral tribunal ruling, and stop the harassment of Filipino fisher folk and … Philippine supply missions,” said Mong Palatino, one of the protest leaders.

China claims almost the entire South China Sea as its territory, policed by an armada of coast guard vessels, some more than 1,000 km (620 miles) away from its mainland.

A 2016 ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration concluded that Beijing’s claim to almost the entire South China Sea was groundless, but China rejects that ruling.

China constantly uses coercion and pressures other countries, including Japan and the Philippines, U.S. Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel said on Monday.

Emanuel made the remark at a Center for Strategic and International Studies event in Washington days before the U.S. President Joe Biden hosted Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos Jr for a summit.

Japan’s ambassador to the U.S. Yamada Shigeo told the event that Biden and Kishida would discuss cooperation in space, energy, and emerging technologies like AI quantum computing.

Recently, the Philippines government has announced measures to protect the country’s sovereignty and maritime rights in order to ensure stability in the region.

In a post on X, Philippines president Ferdinand Marcos Junior said, “Over the course of these past days, I have met with and spoken to our country’s National Security and Defense leadership. They have made their considered recommendations and, through exhaustive consultations, I have given them my directives.