PH asked China to stop seizure of Filipino’s fish catch, discipline its coast guard – Malacañang

Marje Pelayo   •   June 11, 2018   •   2924

Secretary Harry Roque with three of the fishermen who had encounters with the Chinese coast guard

 

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque assured Monday, June 11, that the government has already asked China to stop its coast guard personnel from taking the fish catch of Filipino fishermen in Scarborough Shoal.

At Malacañang, Roque presented before members of the press some of the fishermen who had encounters with the Chinese coast guard. They narrated that the Chinese would barge into their vessel and seize their catch. Since they do not know their language, the fishermen would just let them proceed to avoid tension. The Chinese men would give them some noodles and drinking water in return, and leave.

“Sila na po mismo ang aakyat. Tapos hahalungkatin iyong lagayan ng isda. Di naman kami magkakaintidihan sa pag-uusap kaya kumbaga, nakikisama na lang kami kasi baka nga paalisin na naman kami,” narrated Romel Cejuela, a fisherman from Baja Masinloc, Zambales.

Malacañang does not consider it as harassment because there was no force involved and neither party used a weapon. However, the fishermen are asking the government to take action to prevent a repeat of the incident because it affects their livelihood. In fact, the Chinese have been taking at least P4,000 worth of their income.

Roque said the government has taken steps on the matter, citing that President Rodrigo Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping had agreed to ensure freedom of Filipino fishermen to fish in the waters of Scarborough Shoal.

“Gumawa na kami ng mga hakbang, at ang hinihingi natin dapat gumalaw ang mga otoridad ng Tsina na itigil itong mga pangyayari. So kinakailangan, disiplinahin siguro ng Tsina yung mga bugok na nangunguha ng isda,” Roque said.

However, if they were to be asked, local fishermen would prefer that Philippine Coast Guard or Navy personnel should withdraw their presence in Scarborough Shoal to avoid the tension from further escalating.

“Siguro ok na muna siguro yun [walang coastguard]habang patuloy munang nag-uusap yung gobyerno ng Pilipinas at China para maayos yung mga dapat ayusin siguro,” added Cejuela.

“Mula po ng panahon na pinadala ni Presidente Aquino ang (BRP) Del Pilar diyan sa Scarborough, di na po tayo nakabalik na tayo ang may control (diyan.) Ngayon po, totoo po na nandoon ang mga Tsino pero nakakapangisda po ang mga mangingisda ng Masinloc at ibang mga lugar,” Roque said in agreement to the fishermen’s proposal. – Rosalie Coz / Marje Pelayo

Trump to give TikTok’s Chinese owner 45 days to reach deal to sell — sources

UNTV News   •   August 3, 2020

U.S. President Donald Trump has agreed to give China’s ByteDance 45 days to negotiate a sale of popular short-video app TikTok to Microsoft Corp, two people familiar with the matter said on Sunday (August 2).

U.S. officials have said TikTok under its Chinese parent poses a national risk because of the personal data it handles. Trump said on Friday (July 31) he was planning to ban TikTok in the United States after dismissing the idea of a sale to Microsoft.

But following a discussion between Trump and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, the Redwood, Washington-based company said in a statement on Sunday that it would continue negotiations to acquire TikTok from ByteDance, and that it aimed to reach a deal by Sept. 15.

It was not immediately clear what changed Trump’s mind. Banning TikTok would alienate many of its young users ahead of the U.S. presidential election in November, and would likely trigger a wave of legal challenges. Several prominent Republican lawmakers put out statements in the last two days urging Trump to back a sale of TikTok to Microsoft.

The negotiations between ByteDance and Microsoft will be overseen by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a U.S. government panel that has the right to block any agreement, according to the sources, who requested anonymity ahead of a White House announcement. Microsoft cautioned in its statement that there is no certainty a deal will be reached. (Reuters)

(Production: Bob Mezan)

Pompeo says closed Chinese consulate in Houston was ‘den of spies’

UNTV News   •   July 31, 2020

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday (July 30) the “tide is turning” in U.S. dealings with China, saying there is international support for American policies, including the step-up of maritime maneuvers in the South China Sea.

Reflecting rising tensions between Washington and Beijing, Pompeo took a tough line on China in testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

“We see the Chinese Communist Party for what it is: the center threat of our times,” Pompeo said.

In recent days, Washington and Beijing have each closed one of the other country’s consulates – the United States closing China’s office in Houston and China retaliating by shuttering the U.S. facility in Chengdu – and Pompeo recently announced an end to Hong Kong’s special trading status.

“We closed the consulate in Houston because it was a den of spies,” Pompeo said.

Pompeo was testifying publicly at Foreign Relations Committee hearing for the first time in 15 months, discussing the State Department’s annual budget request.

President Donald Trump’s administration has tried to slash the State Department budget since it took office, which has been rejected by Congress every year. Democratic lawmakers told the hearing that they would not support steep cuts this year either. (Reuters)

(Production: Kia Johnson)

Australian police say Chinese students being targeted in ‘virtual kidnapping’ scam

UNTV News   •   July 28, 2020

New South Wales (NSW) Police on Monday (July 27) warned students of Chinese backgrounds studying in Sydney to be aware of a ‘virtual kidnapping’ scam that has obtained millions in payments from unsuspecting victims.

Victims are called by the criminals purporting to be from a Chinese authority like the police or tax department, “the caller then convinces the victim that they have been implicated in a crime in China, or that their identity has been stolen, and that they must pay a fee to avoid legal action, arrest or deportation” said NSW Police in a statement.

“Essentially threatening harm against people, family members in China unless they contrive a photograph that makes them look like they have been kidnapped. Then they encourage the person to lock themselves away in a hotel room, turn their phones off, cease all contact,” Director of NSW Police State Crime Command, Darren Bennett told media.

Bennett added that the phone calls are becoming very common and encourage anyone receiving one to not pay any money. (Reuters)

(Production: Stefica Nicol Bikes)

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