AFP hoists Philippine flag at Batanes island

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) hoisted the Philippine flag at an island in Batanes on Saturday; strengthening the country’s move in claiming territories within its exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

Facilitated by the Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom) and several non-government organizations, the simple flag-raising ceremony was held at Hill 200 of Y’ami (Mavulis) Island, which is located at the Philippines’ northernmost tip.

“We organized this event as part of our patriotic duty. We are here to help our most disadvantaged fellow Filipinos in this particular place. We want them to know that they’re not alone,” said Mon Corpuz, the overall volunteer coordinator of the activity.

In May 2013, a conflict between the members of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) and a group of Taiwanese fishermen had occurred after the PCG opened fire at the latter for entering the Philippines’ territorial boundaries.

The incident caused a strained relationship between the two countries; with Taiwan freezing the hiring of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in their nation.

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“The Philippine authorities agreed to hold a joint probe into the shooting case, but their attitude became capricious and dishonest after we arrived in Manila,” Senior Justice Ministry Official Chen Wen-chi of Taiwan was quoted as saying after the incident.