‘Wag umasang parurusahan ng China: Robredo wants Chinese who sank Pinoy boat to face trial in PH
Vice President Leni Robredo has urged the Department of Foreign Affairs to press the Chinese government to allow the Chinese involved in hitting a Filipino vessel at West Philippine Sea to face trial in the Philippines.
In a statement Sunday (June 16), Robredo said it was important for Philippine courts to assume jurisdiction if justice were to be served for the 22 fishermen who were on board the boat which sank June 9.
“We strongly urge the Department of Foreign Affairs to demand from the Chinese government to find those responsible and recognize Philippine jurisdiction, so they can face trial before our courts,” she said.
Robredo expressed doubt that Beijing will hold the Chinese accountable over the incident at the West Philippine Sea, noting that it had denied that there was a “hit and run” at sea.
“While we acknowledge the statement of the Chinese ambassador that their government will investigate the incident, we should ask: If the Chinese government has already presented their own version of the events and will not even accept that a wrong was committed, how can we expect it to mete justice on those responsible?” she asked.
The fishermen on board F/B Gemvir claimed their boat was hit by a Chinese vessel while it was anchored on Recto Bank.
The Chinese government, however, claimed the Chinese vessel was “besieged” by seven or eight Filipino boats in the West Philippine Sea.
Robredo said she was outraged by the incident. She also expressed dismay at China for seemingly treating its citizens involved in the incident with kid gloves.