Forgot your password?
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size
  • default color
  • green color
  • red color

MabuhayRadio

Wednesday
Jul 17th
Home Sections Politics U.S. Senator Asks U.S. State Dept. to Clarify U.S. Commitments on Mutual Defense Treaty
U.S. Senator Asks U.S. State Dept. to Clarify U.S. Commitments on Mutual Defense Treaty PDF Print E-mail
User Rating: / 3
PoorBest 
Sections - Politics
Thursday, 21 July 2011 17:33

 

By JOSEPH G. LARIOSA

(© 2011 Journal Group Link International)

 

C HICAGO (jGLi) – United States Senator Jim Webb, chair of the East Asian and Pacific Affairs Subcommittee, called on the U.S. Department of State Tuesday (July 19) to clarify U.S. treaty commitments when it comes to the aid of the Philippines in light of recent reports of China’s use of force in the South China Sea.

 

In an e-mail to this reporter, Will Jenkins, Senator Webb’s Director of Communications, said Senator Webb wrote a letter to Harold H. Koh, Legal Advisor of the U.S. Department of State, seeking “a legal clarification of the U.S. commitments to come to the aid of the Philippines under the Mutual Defense Treaty Between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States of America, signed on August 30, 1951.  Our transparency on this matter is of great importance to our ally, the Philippines, and to the entire Southeast Asian region.”

 

Mr. Webb said, “Repeated actions by Chinese government vessels against the Philippines raise serious questions about the circumstances under which our treaty commitments apply.”

 

The Democratic senior senator from Virginia was the sponsor of bi-partisan Senate Resolution 217 unanimously approved last June 27, 2011, by the Senate, calling for a “peaceful and multilateral resolution to maritime territorial disputes in Southeast Asia” notably the area called Philippine Western Sea or South China Sea.

 

OTHER CO-SPONSORS OF THE RESOLUTION

 

T he resolution was co-sponsored by Senators James M. Inhofe (R-OK), Daniel K. Inouye (D-HI) and Joseph I. Lieberman (ID-CT).

 

In his letter to Mr. Koh, Senator Webb said, “Over a number of years, China has been asserting maritime territorial claims in the South China Sea in an increasingly aggressive manner, at times directly confronting other Southeast Asian claimants to these territories.

 

“Recent reports that it has used force against the Philippines in contested maritime territories are especially troubling.  For example, in February 2011, four Philippine fishing vessels were harassed by Chinese naval vessels near the Jackson Atoll in the Spratly Islands, and in March 2011, the Government of the Philippines reported that maritime security vessels from China attempted to ram one of its surveillance ships in the Reed Bank, only 80 nautical miles from the Philippine island of Palawan and over 500 nautical miles from China. 

 

“AN ATTACK IN PACIFIC OCEAN ISLANDS IS AN ATTACK ON EITHER PARTIES”


As Philippines Foreign Secretary Albert F. del Rosario recently pointed out, “these repeated actions by Chinese government vessels against the
Philippines raise serious questions about the circumstances under which our treaty commitments apply.  Last year following the collision of a Chinese fishing vessel with two Japanese Coast Guard patrol boats, Secretary Clinton came forward with an explicit statement that the Senkaku Islands are covered by the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security Between Japan and the United States.”

 

Under the Mutual Defense Treaty between the Philippines and the United States signed and ratified by both countries on Aug. 30, 1951, it says, “(A)n armed attack on either of the Parties is deemed to include an armed attack on the metropolitan territory of either of the Parties, or on the island territories under its jurisdiction in the Pacific Ocean, its armed forces, public vessels or aircraft in the Pacific.” # # #

 

Editor’s Note: To contact the author, please e-mail him at: (lariosa_jos@sbcglobal.net)



Newer news items:
Older news items:

 

Add your comment

Your name:
Your email:
Subject:
Comment (you may use HTML tags here):

Quote of the Day

"My mom said she learned how to swim. Someone took her out in the lake and threw her off the boat. That's how she learned how to swim. I said, 'Mom, they weren't trying to teach you how to swim.'"--Paula Poundstone