World News 30 Nisan 2024

'This could easily take a turn for the worst': Sky News witnesses clash in disputed South China Sea

'This could easily take a turn for the worst': Sky News witnesses clash in disputed South China Sea

Sky News has witnessed a confrontation in the South China Sea as a Chinese coastguard used a water cannon against a vessel our journalists were reporting from.

The incident – which caused damage to a canopy on Philippine Coastguard BRP Bagacay – happened just outside the Scarborough Shoal.

China claims almost the entire South China Sea as its own, including the Shoal.

'This could easily take a turn for the worst': Sky News witnesses clash in disputed South China Sea
Image:
Pic: @jaytaryela


'This could easily take a turn for the worst': Sky News witnesses clash in disputed South China Sea
Image:
Sky’s Asia correspondent Cordelia Lynch witnessed the incident

Sky’s Asia correspondent Cordelia Lynch was on the BRP Bagacay.

“I’m surrounded by a broken roof because the Chinese coastguard… has been directly firing water cannons at us,” she said.

“This has long been a game of brinkmanship between China and the Philippines. They both lay claim to this waterway.

“This is something that could easily take a turn for the worst.”

It comes as China’s coastguard said it had “expelled” a Philippine coastguard ship and another vessel from waters adjacent to the Scarborough Shoal.

This is the latest incident to happen between the two countries at the disputed atoll.

Read more:
Philippines cuts Chinese barrier and issues warning
US warns China after collision with ships from Philippines
Why is there a dispute in the South China Sea?

The two countries have repeatedly clashed in recent months at the submerged reef, which the Philippines says is in its exclusive economic zone but which China also claims as its own.

Both have also traded accusations over aggressive manoeuvres there and the Philippines recently summoned a Chinese diplomat over the actions.

Read more from Sky News:
Women in burqas snatching other women from Iran’s streets
Four US police shot dead serving arrest warrant

Foreign affairs spokesman Lin Jian said Scarborough Shoal, which China calls Huangyan Island, “is an inherent territory of China”.

He accused the Philippines of “infringing and provocative behaviour” and said the ship had intruded without consent, calling it a “serious violation of China’s sovereignty”.

“China Coast Guard took necessary measures in accordance with the law, which were professional, reasonable and in compliance with regulations,” he added.

source

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