PHL still verifying reported installation of Chinese missile systems in WPS

The Philippines is still verifying report the China has installed missile systems in Kagitingan (Fiery Cross) Reef, Zamora (Subi) Reef and Panganiban (Mischief) Reef in the Spratly Islands.

“We view this matter with concern. It is because we know that any form of militarization, but we are not concluding that, actually this is because we’re still verifying,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said during a press conference in Davao City on May 5.

“Let me begin by saying we are still verifying. Everything that we have read on the papers is based on a US media report, which really we should not completely rely on, okay,” he said.

“So we are first verifying if it is true, and we have not had any verification. Number two, if it is verified of course, we view it with much concern, because any form of militarization of, really, in the West Philippine Sea is worrisome given that it is one of the busiest sea lanes in the world,” he explained.

Roque also said dealing with the Chinese missile systems includes “everything that’s provided for in the UN Charter; that includes resort to diplomacy, resort to diplomatic protests if the DFA deems it fit, but it resorts to all forms of peaceful resolution of disputes. And of course, we capitalize on the fact that we have very good relationship with China.”