PH files diplomatic protest over Scarborough incident

Posted at Apr 11 2012 05:11 PM | Updated as of Apr 12 2012 01:11 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippine government filed Wednesday a diplomatic protest over the alleged intrusion of 2 Chinese maritime surveillance ships in Scarborough Shoal, just 124 nautical miles from the country's main island of Luzon.

Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario said he talked to Chinese Ambassador Ma Keqing to discuss the situation but admitted that the 2 governments have reached an impasse.

"We have reached an impasse in our positions. We resolve to seek a diplomatic solution to the issue," he said.

The foreign affairs department statement earlier said the Philippine Navy's flagship vessel, the Gregorio Del Pilar, found 8 Chinese boats in Scarborough Shoal last Sunday while patrolling the area.

Philippine Navy Flag Officer in Command Vice Admiral Alexander Pama said the Chinese fishing vessels contained corals, giant clams, live sharks and other endangered marine life.

He said 2 Chinese maritime surveillance vessels then arrived in the area and positioned themselves between the Philippine warship and the Chinese fishing boats.

ABS-CBN News Channel, April 11, 2012