The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) has issued a statement after Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Locsin Jr. said “no” on sending Coast Guard attaché to Philippine Embassy in Beijing, China.
PCG said it “endorsed the creation of a Coast Guard attaché post to serve as a focal person who shall directly coordinate and facilitate future bilateral and multilateral engagements with China in relation to the establishment of Joint Coast Guard Committee (JCGC), specifically in the fields of maritime search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, maritime security, maritime safety, and marine environmental protection.”
“Said purpose is also the foundation behind the recommendation to establish Coast Guard attaché posts in Malaysia and Indonesia because of the PCG’s active and relevant engagements with the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) and the Indonesian Maritime Security Agency (BAKAMLA),” it added.
However, PCG noted that it “fully respects the decision of Secretary Locsin on the matter at hand and will continue to find ways to further secure the country’s maritime domain.”
“PH Coast Guard wants own attaché in Beijing Embassy. Flat NO,” Secretary Locsin said. “We have a Defense attaché for national defense issues. A separate Coast Guard attaché means we concede exclusive sovereignty over our coastal waters so they are now subject to discussion instead of automatic protest.”