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Taiwan reiterates importance of freedom of navigation in SCS, blasts China’s provocative act

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Reacting to China’s dangerous and provocative act when China Coast Guard rammed a Philippine vessel during a resupply mission near the Second Thomas Shoal in the South China Sea on June 17, 2024, and resulted in injuries of the Philippine soldiers and further increasing tension in the South China Sea.

Taiwan reiterates the importance of the freedom of navigation in the South China Sea to regional peace and stability. It also calls for a peaceful resolution of the disputes and opposes any unilateral attempts or actions to alter the status quo through force.

On June 15, the China Coast Guard announced the implementation of the Provisions on Administrative Law Enforcement Procedures of Coast Guard Agencies. Formulated in line with China’s Coast Guard Law, the provisions authorize the CCG to board, inspect, and detain foreign vessels and persons suspected of violating exit and entry procedures in waters that China considers to be under its jurisdiction. This has provoked a high degree of international concern.

Taiwan reiterates that freedom of navigation in the South China Sea is vital to regional peace and stability and a matter of high concern to the international community. The continuing increase in gray-zone activities and coercive military behavior in the South China Sea is not only damaging to regional peace and stability but also undermines the international maritime order, which is based on international law and the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

In its statement, Taiwan will continue to work with regional partners and like-minded countries to safeguard a free and open Indo-Pacific jointly. It also calls on both parties to resolve the dispute peacefully, refrain from using military force, and avoid escalating regional tensions. 

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