200 Chinese ships dock at Philippine reef, Manila cries ‘incursion,’ Beijing says it was just ‘bad weather’

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In a storm that is about maritime rights and sovereignty as the incident occurred on the Whitsun Reef of the Spratly Islands archipelago, which China claims virtually in its entirety.

The Philippines called for China to “stop this incursion and immediately recall these boats.” China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, however, moved to calm the situation while asserting China’s territorial claim in issuing a statement that said, “Recently, due to the sea conditions, some Chinese fishing boats have taken shelter from the wind near the Whitsun Reef. I think it is very normal and hope all parties can look at it rationally.”

By Milan Sime Martinic