President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to conduct a regular patrol in the Philippine Rise (Benham Rise) after he ordered to chase away any foreign vessel fishing or conducting research in the resource-rich continental shelf.
Duterte asserted that “the Philippine Rise belongs to the Philippines.”
“We will claim exclusive ownership of the economic zone,” he said. “And I said, I ordered the Philippine Navy and Air Force to do regular patrols,” he added.
The president had earlier ordered to stop marine explorations by foreign scientists in the resource-rich Philippine Rise, formerly known as Benham Rise.
Malacañang later said that Duterte only wanted a stricter application process for foreign researchers.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said foreign researchers, who want to conduct scientific research in the Philippine Rise, must first seek the approval of National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr.