Senator Roxas: Not a square meter to be subtracted from RP territory

Liberal President Senator Mar Roxas said the Philippines should not allow even a square inch to be subtracted from the national territory, as he urged the government to use all international fora to defend the country's sovereignty.

He said this in line with the approval yesterday by the House of the Baselines bill and the subsequent insistence of China over their claim on the Spratlys Islands and other disputed islands.
"Gawin natin kung ano ang dapat nating gawin. Proteksyunan natin ang ating teritoryo. 'Wag nating isu-surrender ang ating claim nang basta-basta na lang, kesyo magalit ang Tsina, ang Vietnam, ang Malaysia o iba pang bansa (We should do what we need to do to protect our territory. We should not surrender our claim only out of fear that China, Vietnam, Malaysia or any other country will retaliate)," he said.

"Mahalaga ang republika. Ano ngayon kung magreklamo sila? Dapat magreklamo rin tayo laban sa panghihimasok nila sa ating soberanya. Hindi ako papayag na mabawasan tayo ng kahit isang metro kwadrado (Our republic is important. So what if they complain? We should also complain against their claim that is an affront to our sovereignty. I will not allow even a square meter to be taken from us)," he said.
Roxas said that the Philippines should defend its territory and exhaust all mechanisms under the United Nations, the International Court of Justice and other international fora to aggressively defend the Philippines' claim.

The Ilonggo senator said fears that trade and other relations with China and other countries may be soured due to this dispute should not blur the primary need to defend the national territory and sovereignty.
"Hindi naman puwedeng lahat na lang ay ibibigay natin sa kanila. Dahil lamang mas malaki ang Army o Navy nila, su-surrender na tayo? Ang mahalaga ay manindigan tayo para sa ating bansa (They are not entitled to everything. Are we going to surrender just because they have a stronger Army or Navy? What's important is we stand for our country and its territory)," he said.
China on Wednesday complained against the Philippines' laying claim over parts of the disputed Spratly Islands and Scarborough Shoal through the Baselines bill passed by the House of Representatives. Kalayaan Islands, which is part of the province of Palawan, is another disputed territory.

Roxas further explained that under the "Regime of Islands," which is part of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the Philippines does not give up its claim over the contested territories, but only recognizes that other countries are also staking a claim over these territories.

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Kevin Ray N. Chua

Kevin Ray N. Chua is a 19 year-old blogger from Cebu City, Philippines and an IT Student at Cebu Institute of Technology.

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2 Responses So far
on February 22, 2009 at 12:29 PM  

I have to agree with sen. mar roxas. Its our territory and we have been claiming it for many years, why give it up now? I just don't get it.

Kevin Ray
on February 22, 2009 at 1:39 PM  

Indeed Mamoi. We can't allow to compromise our sovereignty just because our enemies our mightier than us. We must defend our country against all odds.

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