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Carpio to Duterte: Act or lose PH exclusive economic zone

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If he does not want to lose the country’s claim over the West Philippine Sea (WPS), President Rodrigo Duterte should act quick.

Supreme Court (SC) Justice Antonio Carpio gave the advice after Duterte himself revealed China has threatened to go to war if the Philippines extracts gas and oil in the latter’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

Carpio reminded “the President has the constitutional duty to use all legal means under international law to protect Philippine EEZ.”

“In the face of China’s open threat of war to seize Philippine EEZ in the West Philippine Sea, an area larger than the total land area of the Philippines, the President cannot simply do nothing, or worse acquiesce to China’s action, for inaction is the opposite of protecting Philippine EEZ,” he said in a statement on Saturday, May 20.

The magistrate explained acquiescence under international law is “the inaction of a state in the face of threat to its rights under circumstances calling for objection to the threat to its rights.”

“Acquiescence means the Philippines will lose forever its EEZ in the West Philippine Sea to China,” cautioned Carpio.