Press Release
April 23, 2020

Senator Risa Hontiveros' Response to the Recent Statement of the Chinese Embassy in Manila

It is more absurd and irresponsible to see that, indeed, in the middle of a global pandemic, China has continued to aggressively violate Philippine sovereignty in the region.

My previous statement stands: China must pay at least 200 billion pesos in reparations for the damages it has caused in the reef ecosystems for the past 6 years in the West Philippine Sea. China's irresponsible excursions in the region have cost the Filipino people at least 33.1 billion pesos a year, according to University of the Philippines' Marine Science Institute. The payment of these reparations is crucial and can be channeled to health and economic assistance to the Filipino people in the middle of a global pandemic.

China cannot claim to be a friendly 'neighbor across the sea' when it has continued its land reclamation activities in the West Philippine Sea.

Friends help each other out, not occupy their islands and destroy their reefs.

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