Noel Tarrazona

Pag-asa

Duterte Reaches out to U.S. Amid South China Sea Harassment

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-10-03 20:24:09

As reports that Chinese vessels are increasing in number near Pag-asa (Thitu) Island in the South China Sea, Philippines' President Rodrigo Duterte has hinted at a possible reconciliation with the U.S. Duterte made a surprise announcement  that he wanted to be “friendly” with the U.S., a view which contrasts to earlier statements. On several previous occasions, he called on U.S. special forces in the Philippines to return home and said he no longer wanted a joint military sea and land...

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Indonesia

Australia, Japan and India Look to South China Sea

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-09-26 01:06:19

Three major countries in the Asia Pacific region are expected to continue to make their naval presence felt in the South China Sea amid the Philippine’s softening sovereignty stance in the disputed waters.  Australia, Japan and India are all making moves in the region at a time when the Philippines is softening its stance, collaborating with China in oil and gas exploration and accepting the increasing presence of Chinese vessels within its exclusive economic zone. Tokyo has just announced that ...

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summit

Coast Guard Leaders to Collaborate on Piracy and Pollution

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-09-19 19:58:45

Coast Guard officers from over 30 countries agreed to establish inter-regional collaborations to address the rising threats of piracy and marine pollution during the Coast Guard Global Summit held in Tokyo last week.   The U.S., Canada, South Korea, China Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Australia, Turkey, Russia, France, Djibouti, Hong Kong and Japan participated in the summit which was jointly hosted by the Japan Coast Guard and Tokyo-based Nippon Foundation. Japanese Coast Guard Admiral Satoshi Nakajima said Coast Guards...

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maritime police

Japan and UNODC Join Asian Piracy Battle

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-09-07 03:30:40

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is joining several countries in Asia to battle ISIS-inspired pirates in the Sulu and Celebes seas. This development came when UNODC and Japan forged a new partnership in Vienna to develop counter measures to address the increasing maritime threats in the region. 38 cases of piracy were recorded in 2016 that included abduction of seafarers from vessels in the Sulu and Celebes Seas. Of the 38 attacks, 21 involved the abduction...

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South Korea

South Korea Targets Southeast Asian Cruisers

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-09-02 18:02:03

The South Korean government has laid out strategies for attracting cruise tourists from Southeast Asia. Oceans Minister Kim Young-Choon announced that the government aims to have three million cruise tourists by 2020, and Southeast Asia, as one of the world’s fastest growing regions, is a potentially important market. Last year South Korea hosted 1.95 million cruise tourists, so three million is possible with the development of the Southeast Asian market. The region has a population of 640 million and a...

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libyan coast guard

Fuel Smuggling: Libya Detains 20 Filipinos

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-08-30 20:37:57

The Philippine government has instructed its embassy in Libya to “exert all efforts” to secure the immediate release of the 20 Filipino seafarers who are presently detained on the suspicion that they were trying to smuggle six million liters (1.6 million gallons) of fuel to Tunisia. The 20 Filipino seafarers were detained on Sunday when Libyan authorities intercepted the Liberian-flagged tanker Levant sailing 110 miles from Tripoli. The Libyan Coast Guard then took the vessel, operated by Evalend Shipping Tankers in...

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Pag-asa Island

Filipino Judge Calls for Action in South China Sea

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-08-26 11:36:15

Shortly after ASEAN and China agreed to adopt the South China Sea Maritime Code of Conduct to diffuse violent confrontations, a Filipino judge has accused China of invading Philippine maritime territory. The accusation is that China has deployed ships to guard a newly created island in the West Philippines Sea. Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio accused China of deploying two frigates, a Chinese coast guard vessel and two fishing boats near Sandy Cay after Philippine Congressman Gary...

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plane

Trump Put to the Test in Asia Pacific

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-08-13 22:53:12

The U.S. is positioning itself to respond to two of its toughest maritime challenges in the Asia Pacific region, and many view maritime tensions in the region as a critical test of President Donald Trump’s leadership. Guam The nation is currently mobilizing its military and maritime resources to respond to North Korea’s plan to fire intermediate-range missiles into the 40-kilometer (25-mile) maritime territory of Guam, a U.S. Pacific territory. Trump hinted on Twitter...

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ships

ASEAN, China Adopt Framework for Maritime Code of Conduct

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-08-09 18:14:59

China and the ASEAN nations have adopted a framework for a code of conduct in the South China Sea designed to help diffuse tensions in the disputed maritime territory.  The framework is the product of a series of dialogues between ASEAN nations and China with the long term objective of avoiding violent confrontation in the region where China, Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam,  Malaysia and Brunei have overlapping territorial claims. Agreement on the framework was reached at the 50th Ministerial Meeting of...

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ASEAN

China Woos ASEAN to Resolve Disputed Sea Without Outsiders

By Noel Tarrazona 2017-07-30 00:35:28

The Chinese government has called on Southeast Asian countries to prevent non-Asian countries from intervening in the resolution of territorial disputes in the South China Sea. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi was in Manila last week to discuss the framework for a code of conduct in the South China Sea between and among ASEAN nations. China has claimed ownership of a large part of the South China Sea  despite the Hague’s Arbitration Court having denied its sovereign claim. Wang announced...

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