By Prince Golez
President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the deployment of coast guard personnel in waters near Ilocos Norte after Governor Imee Marcos complained about illegal foreign fishing in the area.
“I would suggest (Defense Secretary) Delfin (Lorenzana) to deploy some of the Coast Guards dito banda. Papalit-palit na lang and to apprehend them,” Duterte said during his visit to typhoon-hit Ilocos Norte on Sunday.
Marcos claimed that 50 Vietnamese and Chinese fishing vessels are spotted poaching in the coastal waters of Ilocos Norte every day.
But, the chief executive called for more leniency for offenders “because karamihan ASEAN eh.”
Authorities in Indonesia, he said, blow up illegal fishing boats caught in its territorial waters.
“Alam mo, huwag na lang pahirapan. Isauli lang. Basta every time that they violate the law, they will be arrested,” Duterte said.
He said he would bring up the problem of poaching during the ASEAN meetings.
“We have to do it with caution kasi eh… [D]ahan-dahan muna tayo diyan. After we have talked dito sa ASEAN, we probably would know what to do,” the President said.