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China trying to hoodwink Pinoys on POGO spying — Zarate

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House Deputy Minority leader and Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate on Monday slammed Chinese ambassador Zhao Jianhua for trying to turn the tables on overseas Filipino workers in denying the possibility of China’s spying in Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations (POGOs).

He said Zhao’s statement “is a classic non-denial denial from the Chinese government; it’s akin to the US ‘neither confirm nor deny’ tack when confronted of its nuclear weapon carrying ships that entered our territory.”

“Fact is, the security concerns raised are very valid because China has the means, capacity and motive to use these hubs for its own military and political purposes,” said the Makabayan solon.

“The Chinese ambassador’s statement is just a way of turning the tables on Filipinos who have raised a valid point concerning the locations of Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations (POGOs) in the country,” Zarate added.

“POGOs in the country are located near military and police bases like Camp Aguinaldo (Armed Forces of the Philippines); Camp Crame (Philippine National Police); Camp Bagong Diwa (PNP National Capital Region Police Office); Fort Bonifacio (Philippine Army); Villamor Air Base (Philippine Air Force); and the Philippine Navy headquarters in Manila,” he said.

“Also with China’s technology they can easily turn such sites into spying operations,” said the Davao-based solon.

“But what is more important factor though is that they have a motive for spying in the Philippines especially with their aggressive and militaristic stance in the West Philippine Sea,” he added.

“With these laid out it is imperative that POGOs should be immediately be investigated by Congress,” said Zarate.

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