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People's Daily Online>>Foreign Affairs

China summons Philippine diplomat over Huangyan Island dispute


08:51, April 19, 2012

BEIJING, April 18 (Xinhua) -- Vice Foreign Minister Fu Ying on Wednesday summoned the Charge D'affaires of the Philippine Embassy in China to lodge a representation over the recent incident at Huangyan Island following a previous summons on Sunday.

Fu said the harassment of Chinese fishermen by a Philippine naval ship in a lagoon near Huangyan Island has aroused "great concern" on the part of China.

On April 10, 12 Chinese fishing boats were harassed by a Philippine Navy gunboat while taking refuge from harsh weather in a lagoon near China's Huangyan Island. Two Chinese Marine Surveillance ships conducting routine patrols in the area later came to the fishermen's rescue.

"The tension has been eased through bilateral negotiations," Fu said, adding that she hopes the Philippine side will honor their commitment and immediately withdraw their ships from the lagoon.

Philippine authorities have recently stated that the Philippines has sovereignty over Huangyan Island, Fu said, adding that their remarks are contrary to historical fact and legal principles.

Huangyan Island is an integral part of Chinese territory, Fu said, adding that there is no basis for the Philippines' claim to the island and that China cannot accept their claim.

She urged the Philippine side to respect China's sovereignty, refrain from taking any action that might escalate the situation and make due efforts to safeguard peace and stability on the South China Sea.

Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario on Tuesday asked China to agree to bring the dispute to the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea for arbitration.

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