P7.3 million worth of smuggled cigarettes seized in waters off Zamboanga City

Robie de Guzman   •   April 30, 2021   •   216

State security forces have intercepted a watercraft carrying P7.3 million worth of smuggled cigarettes in waters off Barangay Recodo in Zamboanga City, the Philippine Naval Forces Western Mindanao (NFWM) said.

The NFWM said elements from its Seaborne Patrol Units, Navy SEALS, intelligence operatives, and members of the Philippine Coast Guard and Bureau of Customs seized the contraband that was loaded on MB Dream Boat on April 28.

The smuggled cigarettes were packed in 205 master cases and were loaded in a boat coming from Sulu.

The cigarettes bore brands like Cannon, Champion, New Far Gold, and New Far Green.

The boat had a crew of 10 who were escorted to Naval Station Romulo Espaldon.

“The crew underwent a medical check-up at Camp Navarro General Hospital and were all declared to be in good condition,” the NFWM said.

The apprehended individuals and the confiscated items were turned over to the custody of BOC Zamboanga District for proper disposition, it added.

DA service boat carrying COVID-19 vaccines capsizes in Quezon

UNTV News   •   May 15, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — A service boat carrying boxes of COVID-19 vaccines capsized in waters off Quezon Province on Thursday.

According to a report, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) responded to the maritime incident involving the service boat of the Department of Agriculture that capsized at approximately 100 meters away from the shoreline of Barangay Ungos, Real, Quezon at around 7:55 a.m. on May 13, 2021.

On board the said boat were two boxes of COVID-19 vaccines; two Department of Health (DOH) personnel; two police officers of the Municipal Police Station (MPS) Polillo, as well as the boat captain and motorman.

According to the passengers, the DA service boat accidentally hit a concrete post along the vicinity waters off Barangay Ungos, causing the vessel to capsize.

At around 8:30 a.m., all individuals were rescued and were declared in good physical condition.

The two DOH personnel accordingly made proper coordination with their respective units to check the condition of the COVID-19 vaccines and conduct appropriate measures.

Coast Guard to install lighted ocean buoys at Philippine Rise

Marje Pelayo   •   May 11, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) is set to install the first three of 10 state-of-the-art lighted ocean buoys to mark the Philippine Rise as part of the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

The ceremony will be held on Wednesday, May 12.

The 30-foot long buoys, which arrived in Cebu from Valencia, Spain on May 7, are equipped with modern marine aids to navigation lanterns, specialized mooring systems, and a remote monitoring system that uses satellite technology to transmit data to the PCG National Headquarters in Port Area, Manila.

PCG Commandant Admiral George Ursabia Jr. said the presence of buoys in the Philippine Rise will effectively communicate that said vicinity waters is considered a special protected zone.

Hence, mining and oil exploration are strictly prohibited to preserve its rich natural resources.

Moreover, said ocean markers will also be used by the PCG to mark the designated food supply exclusive zone and ensure safe navigation in the Philippine Rise, formerly known as Benham Rise.

Mga barko ng China sa Sabina Shoal matagumpay na naitaboy ng PCG

Marje Pelayo   •   May 5, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Iniulat ng Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) na matagumpay nilang naitaboy ang ilang barko ng China na pumasok sa Sabina Shoal sa karagatang sakop ng Pilipinas.

Ang Sabina Shoal ay matatagpuan humigit-kumulang 73 milya mula sa Mapankal Point, Rizal, Palawan.

Ayon kay PCG Spokesperson Commodore Armando Balilo, nagpadala ng radio communication ang Pilipinas ng mamataan ng BRP Cabra (MRRV-4409), MCS-3002, at MCS-3004 ang pitong ‘unidentified foreign vessel’ na naka-angkla sa lugar.

Kalauna ay natukoy na ito ay mga China Maritime Militia Vessel (CMMV).

“This is Philippine Coast Guard BRP Cabra (MRRV-4409). You are within Philippine exclusive economic zone. You are requested to provide the following: name of vessel, intention, last and next port of call on Channel 16,” panawagan ng PCG sa mga barko ng China.

Ito ay naganap sa sa kasagsagan ng joint maritime exercise ng PCG at Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) sa Sabina Shoal noong ika-27 ng Abril.

Ayon sa ulat ng PCG, nakipag-komunikasyon ang PCG sa mga ito para ipahayag na ang Sabina Shoal ay bahagi ng Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) ng Pilipinas.

Nang hindi makatanggap ng sagot pagkalipas ng tatlong radio communication, nilapitan ng mga barko ng Pilipinas ang mga barko ng China na agad namang nag-angat ng angkla at nagpa-andar ng makina.

Sinundan ng PCG at BFAR ang paglalayag ng mga barko para masigurong tuluyang aalis ang mga CMMV sa Sabina Shoal.

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