ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon PrintSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
International relations

Philippines sides with Vietnam after China sinks fishing boat

'Statement of solidarity' comes as Manila leans on Beijing for help with coronavirus

Philippine Navy frigate BRP Andres Bonifacio is seen arriving at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii in preparation for the world’s largest international maritime exercise RIMPAC with 24 other nations. (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Navy) 

MANILA -- The Philippines on Wednesday expressed "deep concern" over the sinking of a Vietnamese fishing boat that was allegedly rammed by a Chinese vessel in the disputed South China Sea.

In a rare public rebuke of Beijing, Manila's foreign ministry issued a statement recalling the sinking of a Philippine fishing boat in the sea last June.

"Our own similar experience revealed how much trust in a friendship is lost by it, and how much trust was created by Vietnam's humanitarian act of directly saving the lives of our Filipino fishermen."

When the Philippine boat was rammed by a Chinese vessel in the Reed Bank area, Vietnamese fisherman plucked 22 Filipino crew members out of the water. This time, last week, a Vietnamese boat with eight aboard was apparently rammed by a Chinese ship in the Paracel Islands.

The eight fisherman were reportedly rescued by the Chinese.

Manila's "statement of solidarity" with Vietnam comes despite Chinese aid to the Philippines amid the coronavirus crisis. Beijing has sent test kits, medical equipment and experts to help the Southeast Asian country cope.

Since his rise to power in 2016, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte had also softened Manila's stance on the South China Sea dispute, winning economic largesse from Beijing, which claims nearly the entire waterway.

Apart from China, the Philippines and Vietnam, Brunei and Malaysia also have overlapping claims in the sea, which according to the U.S. contains $2.5 trillion worth of energy resources.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends July 31st

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media