UPDATE: Excerpt from the State of the Nation Address by Pres. Aquino:
“The situation in Bajo de Masinloc has been the source of much discussion. Chinese fishermen entered out territory. Our patrol boats intercepted some of their ships, which contain endangered species. As your leader, it is my duty to uphold the laws of our country. And as I did, tension ensued: on one hand, the Chinese had their Nine-Dash Line Theory laying claim to almost the entire West Philippine Sea; on the other, there was the United Nations Convention on the Laws of the Sea, which recognized the rights of many countries, including that of China itself.
We demonstrated utmost forbearance in dealing with this issue. As a sign of our goodwill, we replaced our navy cutter with a civilian boat as soon as we could. We chose not to respond to their media’s harangues. I do not think it excessive to ask that our rights be respected, just as we respect their rights as a fellow nation in a world we need to share.
There are those who say that we should let Bajo de Masinloc go; we should avoid the trouble. But if someone entered your yard and told you he owned it, would you agree? Would it be right to give away that which is rightfully ours?
And so I ask for solidarity from our people regarding this issue. Let us speak with one voice. Help me relay to the other side the logic of our stand.
This is not a simple situation, and there can be no simple solutions. Rest assured: we are consulting experts, every leader of our nation, our allies—even those on the other side—to find a resolution that is acceptable to all.”
The State of the Nation Address: Learn more about its traditions and history: http://t.co/0G6AlIio
Livestream the third State of the Nation Address of President Benigno S. Aquino III
Batasang Pambansa, Quezon City, July 23, 2012