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Transcript on Ren'ai Jiao 'new model' is real; Philippines breaches commitment

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Bright Star

May 10, 2024, 19:19


Ren'ai Reef [File photo/chinanews.com.cn]

Global Times-The Philippine government has been overdrawing on its reputation and national credibility on issues related to the South China Sea, saying one thing and doing another and constantly flip-flopping, Chinese analysts said after Philippine officials accused China of "violating wiretapping law" over a phone conversation in which a Philippine navy official agreed to a "new model" for resupply missions concerning Ren'ai Jiao.

A transcript of the supposed recording of a phone call between the Chinese side and the Philippines' Western Command (WESCOM) Commander Vice Admiral Alberto Carlos on January 3 was revealed by media in recent days, in which Carlos agreed to a "new model" for resupply missions concerning Ren'ai Jiao. 

The transcript which documented the phone conversation between the Chinese side and Carlos on January 3 has been confirmed to be true, the Global Times has learned from a source familiar with the affair on Wednesday. Following the conversation, the Philippine side adhered to the "new model" in the subsequent resupply mission, only delivering essential daily supplies to the grounded warship, and notified the Chinese side in advance.

Based on the "new model" arrangement and humanitarian principle, the Chinese side permitted the Philippine resupply operation, said the source. 

However, thereafter, the Philippine side reneged on its promise. Not only did it fail to notify the Chinese side in advance of its resupply activities, but it also attempted to transport construction materials to the illegally grounded vessel, deliberately causing trouble and maliciously hyping up the situation. 

The China Coast Guard has firmly restricted the Philippine's illegal resupply activities, according to the source.

On Wednesday, Philippine defense chief Gilberto Teodoro Jr. told reporters that the audio recording had "violated" the country's Anti-Wire Tapping Law.

Teodoro also claimed that they are leaving the department of Foreign Affairs to find out the truth behind the incident, threatening that the person responsible for the recording will "be expelled," according to media reports. 

Teodoro's remarks sound more like chicanery when facing undeniable facts, as the transcript of the "new model" is true, said Chinese analysts.

At a press conference on May 6, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lin Jian also gave a briefing on the situation, saying that early this year, the Chinese and Philippine sides agreed on a "new model" for resupply missions concerning Ren'ai Jiao after multiple rounds of discussions through diplomatic channels and the Armed Forces of the Philippines WESCOM.

The Philippine military made repeated confirmations that the "new model" had been approved by all key officials in the Philippines chain of command, including the Secretary of National Defense and the National Security Advisor. On February 2, the Philippines carried out one resupply mission under this "new model" before abandoning it, said Lin. 

The Chinese proverb "listen to what they say, watch what they do" seems fitting when considering the recent reactions of senior officials in the Philippines. It appears that the country has habitually been overdrawing on its government's reputation and national credibility on relevant issues, saying one thing and doing another, presenting one face in public and another in private, constantly flip-flopping, Ding Duo, a deputy director of the Institute of Maritime Law and Policy at the China Institute for South China Sea Studies, told the Global Times. 

In addition to China, other regional countries and the international community have sufficient reason to believe that "political commitments" made by the Philippine government are no longer credible, and that the Philippines is perceived as an untrustworthy nation in international relations, said Ding.

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