Philippine Navy chief Vice Admiral Giovanni Bacordo confirmed, during a forum with Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines (FOCAP) August 10, that at least two Chinese survey vessels were spotted in Recto Bank in West Philippine Sea.
“It has come to my attention, the presence of two Chinese surveillance vessels in Recto Bank. Right now, I think there is only one,” Vice Admiral Bacordo said.
“We have checked if they have any clearance to conduct survey in that area and we found out that there is none,” he added.
He also said that the vessels were monitored to be sailing at 3 knots.
“We would like to conclude that indeed they’re conducting surveys because they have been there for about a week already and the speed is something less than three knots and you’re only doing that if you’re conducting actual surveys. We will be submitting this report to the Defense department and request for the filing of a diplomatic protest,” Bacordo said.