The incident involving a Chinese vessel and a Filipino fishing boat near Recto Bank is not a collision, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said Monday.
“It appears that it was an allision, An allision is when a stationary object gets hit by a moving object,” Nograles told CNN Philippines. “It was anchored, it was not moving.”
Nograles said the Chinese vessel Yuemaobinyu 42212 hit the Filipino boat F/B GEM-VER which was moored near the bank, based on the results of several departments’ separate investigations on the incident.
But the Cabinet Secretary said the investigation will continue, as discussed in the joint cluster meeting of Cabinet officials.
“Itong [This] continuing investigation, is being conducted to get more of the facts and to preserve also kung ano man ang [whatever is the] evidence because we need to translate that to affidavits as well,” he added,.
Nograles said a diplomatic protest was handed on June 13 to the deputy chief of mission of the Chinese Embassy.
He also refuted Agriculture chief Manny Piñol’s earlier statement that the ramming was simply a “maritime accident.”
“We are not prepared to make a conclusion. That’s a conclusion of facts,” he explained.
Piñol was tasked to focus primarily on assisting the 22 affected fishermen rescued by Vietnamese nationals as their boat sank due to damage from the allision.
Nograles also dismissed reports that Chinese Ambassador Zhao Jianhua will be summoned to Malacañang over the incident. Zhao has said Chinese authorities will probe the matter and will penalize those found accountable for the sinking of the Filipino boat.
This article wa soriginally published on CNN Philippines on June 17, 2019.