Philippines settles boat row with Taiwan

The Philippines Government released its report on August 9 relating to the investigation of Taiwan’s (Republic of China) fishing boat Guang Da Xing No 28 shooting incident. The investigation was completed through the Taiwan-Philippines mutual judicial assistance mechanism.

It suggested that the assault by a Philippines Government vessel caused the death of the ROC fisherman Hong Shi-cheng and recommended eight Philippine Coast Guard personnel be prosecuted for homicide, and four for obstruction of justice.

After months of waiting, a just and peaceful resolution to this ill-fated incident has been reached. An emissary Amadeo Perez Jr, Chairman of the Manila Economic and Cultural Office, was sent to Taiwan on August 8 2013 to offer a formal apology with proper compensation to the victim’s family on behalf of President Benigno Aquino III and the people of the Philippines.

Expediting talks

The Philippines Government has promised to launch talks on a bilateral fishery arrangement expeditiously.

Based on the Philippines’ positive response towards the four demands made by the ROC Government, eleven punitive sanctions have been lifted.

We can see that the Philippines Government has been putting all of its efforts into returning bilateral ties to normal.

On behalf of the ROC Government, I thank Indian Newslink for its moral support in the ROC’s position and its effort in publishing the articles that followed this incident, Including Dr Stephen Hoadley’s article titled ‘Filipino Intransigence Rocks the Peace Boat’(June 15, 2013 issue). This has helped the readers of this newspaper learn every aspect of the tragic event. I would like to express my sincere appreciation to all readers for your support by taking the time to pay heed to this incident.

The ROC is glad to see that the unfortunate incident comes to an end with an outcome it deserves. It is our deepest hope that this kind of incident will never happen again.

Lincoln Ting is Director General of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Auckland

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