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Coast guard, BFAR conduct exercises in West Philippine Sea

Members of the Philippine Coast Guard and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources  (BFAR) conducted maritime exercises in the disputed West Philippine Sea  on Saturday in the presence of Chinese vessels intruding the area.

Super Radyo DZBB Jhomer Apresto's tweet on Sunday shows maritime patrol the photos that were  shared by PCG spokesman Commodore Armand Balilo. No further details were provided for the images.

Earlier, the National Task Force West Philippine Sea (WPS) said, at least, 240 Chinese militia vessels swarmed the disputed waters off Kalayaan in Palawan and were within the Philippines' exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

On the other hand, PCG's Balilo said around eight capital ships were used for maritime exercises in the Bajo de Masinloc (Panatag Shoal) area, and in the Pag-asa Islands, which are part of the country's EEZ in WPS.

The exercises include navigation, small boat operations, and maintenance logistics.

Nurses, doctors, technicians and maritime specialists also joined in the maritime exercises.

Aside from these, more capital ships carrying BFAR and coastguard personnel will be sent for the maritime exercises in the Batanes Group of Islands, Benham Rise, and the southern areas of the Philippines.

Earlier, Manila's envoy to the United States said that the US is just waiting for the Philippines to give a greenlight for assistance over the presence of Chinese vessels within the country's EEZ.

Meanwhile, in a televised address last week, President Rodrigo Duterte said nothing will happen even if he himself will sail to WPS. —LBG, GMA News