China: Philippines must stop exercising ownership over Pag-asa island


Repair and visit are acts of ownership that the Philippines can exercise over islands and territories over which it exercise sovereignty and jurisdiction.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Friday revealed that China was trying to block the Philippine government's plan to repair the structures of Pagasa Island, one of the largest Spratly Islands in the sea of Western Philippines.

When the Chinese ambassador to the Philippines, Zhao Jianhua, learned that the Philippines was going to fix the track in Pag-asa, he approached Lorenzana and said, "No". This was reported by Lorenzana.

In response to Zhao, Lorenzana pointed out that it was right for the Philippines to improve the track and all the facilities on the island of Pag-asa, since China had already developed the reef Subi Reef.

When Zhao knew I was going to Pag-asa, he came to me and tried to trap Lorenzana by forbidding him to go there. The first gave many reasons: some countries could follow me to go to the islands and others.

SOURCE: Patricia Lourdes Viray (2018). China tried to block Pag-asa Island repairs — Lorenzana. (philstar.com) - November 23, 2018 - 4:11pm. https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2018/11/23/1871088/china-tried-block-pag-asa-island-repairs-lorenzana
Thitu Island (Tagalog: Pag-asa, literally "hope"), having an area of 37.2 hectares (92 acres), is the second largest of the naturally occurring Spratly Islands and the largest of the Philippine-administered islands. It lies about 480 kilometres (300 mi) west of Puerto Princesa City. Its neighbours are the North Danger Reef to the north, Subi Reef to the west, and the Loaita and Tizard Banks to the south. Though administered as part of Kalayaan, Palawan, Philippines, it is also claimed by China, Taiwan and Vietnam.

SOURCE: Thitu Island From. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thitu_Island

According to Article II of the 1987 Constitution, "[t]he national territory comprises the Philippine archipelago, with all the islands and waters embraced therein, and all other territories over which the Philippines has sovereignty or jurisdiction, consisting of its terrestrial, fluvial and aerial domains, including its territorial sea, the seabed, the subsoil, the insular shelves, and other submarine areas. The waters around, between, and connecting the islands of the archipelago, regardless of their breadth and dimensions, form part of the internal waters of the Philippines."