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Robredo vows to stand up for Pinoy fishermen’s rights: Kahit gaano kahirap, ilalaban ko kayo!

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Vice President Leni Robredo assured the Filipino fishermen in the West Philippine Sea that she will defend their rights, amid accounts of harassment by the Chinese Coast Guard.

In an interview Tuesday (June 12) after the oath-taking of barangay officials in Rosario, Cavite, Robredo assured the fishermen that Filipinos are behind them in fighting for their right to fish in Scarborough Shoal.

“Gusto nating sabihin sa mga mangingisda natin sa West Philippine Sea na nandito tayo para tulungan sila,” she said as the country marked its 120th Independence Day.

“Parang nakakadurog ng puso isipin na ang pakiramdam nila wala na sa kanilang kumakampi. Gusto sana nating ipaabot na marami pa naman kaming handang ipaglaban iyong karapatan ninyo. At gaano man kahirap, ipapakipaglaban namin iyon,” she added.

A documentary team from GMA Network caught the Chinese Coast Guard seizing fish taken by Filipino fishermen at Scarborough Shoal recently. Malacañang, however, downplayed the incident and said it wasn’t an example of harassment.

Earlier in the day, Robredo urged Filipinos to value the hard-won freedoms and rights they enjoy.

“Iyong mga karapatan na tinatamasa natin ngayon, pinaghirapan ito ng mga nauna sa atin, at may obligasyon tayo dahil tayo ang nagtatamasa nito. May obligasyon tayong patuloy na ipaglaban na hindi ito mawala sa atin,” she said.