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Republic of the Philippines

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Quezon City
SIXTEENTH CONGRESS
Second Regular Session
HOUSE RESOLUTION No. 2031
_______________________________________________________________________________
Introduced by BAYAN MUNA
Rep. NERI J. COLMENARES and Rep. CARLOS ISAGANI T. ZARATE

RESOLUTION
DIRECTING THE COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND NATIONAL DEFENSE
TO CONDUCT AN INQUIRY, IN AID OF LEGISLATION AND AS PART OF ITS
OVERSIGHT FUNCTION, ON THE NECESSARY ACTIONS TO DEFEND PHILIPPINE
TERRITORY AND EXCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONES AND COUNTER CHINAS
ILLEGAL RECLAMATION ACTIVITIES IN THE WEST PHILIPPINE SEAS AS THE
COUNTRY CANNOT RELY ON THE DOUBLE-DEALING UNITED STATES OF
AMERICA
WHEREAS, the Philippines has territorial claims over parts of the Spratly group of islands located
within the country's exclusive economic zone and continental shelf, as stipulated in the United Nations
Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) which states that the coastal state has sovereign rights
for the purpose of exploring and exploiting, conserving and managing the natural resources, whether
living or non-living, of the waters 200 nautical miles from its coast. The coastal state will also have
jurisdiction over the establishment and use of artificial islands, installations and structures; marine
scientific research; and the protection and preservation of the marine environment";
WHEREAS, Speaker Feliciano Sonny Belmonte even stated that the whole world is unable, unwilling
or afraid to help us, the US included. China is obviously violating our territory in front of the whole
world. Their activities in the disputed territory will affect the flow of goods among countries, making the
issue a serious global problem, Chinas blatant expansion activities are making the problem not just a
regional security problem, but a global one,
WHEREAS, A Chinese coast guard vessel has been reported to have driven away Filipino fishermen
from their traditional fishing grounds in Panatag Shoal. The Chinese action is deplorable, patently
provocative because the Chinese vessel purportedly used water cannons against the fishermen that
caused the injury of a fisherman. This incident happened more than a year after a group of fishermen
from Pangasinan and Zambales reported that Chinese vessels fired water cannon at their boats while
these were anchored at Panatag Shoal;

WHEREAS, While the Philippines raised diplomatic protests and has announced to bring the issue to
the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), President Benigno S. Aquino was also quick
to call on the United States to interfere in the regional dispute and come to aid the Philippines against
China, citing the unequal 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty;
WHEREAS, As evidenced by the recent talks between Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario and Scot
Marciel, principal deputy assistant secretary at the Department of States Bureau of East Asian Pacific
Affairs, the US did not commit to side with our country but instead vowed to maintain its global military
superiority and political leadership. Specifically, the US seeks to reassert American hegemony in the
Asia-Pacific, vis-a-vis the rising economic and military power of China by its Enhanced Defense
Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) with the Philippines;
WHEREAS, We are urging the House of Representatives and the Honorable Speaker to use our
international parliamentary networks to condemn Chinas aggression. As standing members of the Asian
Parliamentary Association (AIPO) and the Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) we should use these venues
to gather international support for our sovereign claim over Panatag shoal;
WHEREAS, it will not be difficult to get the support of parliaments and their individual members
because our exercise of sovereignty is based in international conventions and practices. We may not win
through military might but certainly we are strong in the legal, moral and diplomatic arenas;
WHEREAS, we can also ask our Coast Guard to truly guard our territory and our fishermen so that
they would not be harassed by Chinese vessels. The executive can also fast track the rehabilitation of the
airstrip in Pag-asa Islands and the AFP could also fortify its positions in areas where the Chinese are
most active, so there can be at least a first line of defense against further provocative acts;
WHEREAS, we are also asking both Houses of Congress to launch a diplomatic offensive to get other
countries to protest the instability caused by Chinese aggressive acts in the region. Other countries
should be involved as well because they may be the next target of China's bullying;
WHEREAS, Congress has the duty to look into the reported Chinese intrusions with the end in view of
defending our territory and EEZ while finding ways to de-escalate tensions and exploring possible
solutions to the problem, especially those that may require legislation or even diplomatic initiatives
involving members of the legislative branch in the claimant countries;
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Committee on Foreign Affairs and National
Defense to conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, and as part of its oversight function, on the
necessary actions to defend Philippine territory and exclusive economic zones and counter Chinas illegal
reclamation activities in the West Philippine Seas as the country cannot rely on the duplicitous United
States of America (USA);
Adopted,

Rep. NERI J. COLMENARES


Bayan Muna Party-list

Rep. CARLOS ISAGANI T. ZARATE


Bayan Muna Party-list