Various groups held a mass action at the Chinese consulate in Makati City last Tuesday (November 20) to denounce the visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping as they expressed outrage against the Rodrigo Duterte government for its subservience to the Chinese government.
The Pilipinong Nagkakaisa Para sa Soberanya o P1NAS called Duterte a traitor to the Pilipino people as it pointed out that his government is virtually surrendering Philippine territory in the West Philippine Sea to China.
Even after losing in an international tribunal that determined the disputed areas are part of the Philippine exclusive economic zone three years ago, China refuses to recognize the decision proceeded to militarize some islands.
China’s presence in the area includes so-called “ joint development” schemes with the Duterte government seen as a weakening of the Philippine claims.
In the said rally, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) expressed concern that Duterte’s economic deals with China may push the Philippines under deeper debt.
In his visit to the Philippines, Xi took home 29 agreements, including an understanding on joint oil exploration in the West Philippine Sea and the construction of mega dams, including the Chico River Pump Irrigation, the New Centennial Water Source Kaliwa Project, and the Agus-Pulangi Mega Dam project.
Indigenous peoples earlier raised fears that the China-ODA projects will cause their displacement from their lands and livelihood.
“Pawning our lands to an imperialist country like China is a serious crime that may lead to ethnocide,” Kalipunan ng Katutubong Mamamayan ng Pilipinas said. # (Joseph Cuevas)