‘China’s most destructive boats’ again poaching at Scarborough
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Fleets of Chinese vessels have returned to disputed areas in the South China Sea (West Philippine Sea) to harvest endangered giant clams, the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative-Center for Strategic and International Studies (AMTI-CSIS) said in a report on Monday. The vessels — typically dozens of small fishing boat that are accompanied by larger “motherships” — were described as “China’s most destructive boats,” as they destroy large swaths of coral reef to get at the giant clams, which are transported to Hainan for processing into jewelry and statuary. Their activities had dropped sharply from 2016 to late 2018 in the wake of an arbitral tribunal finding that China had violated international obligations but the AMTI-CSIS said that before the end of last year, “satellite imagery has shown these fleets operating frequently at Scarborough Shoal (Panatag Islands) and throughout the Paracels, including at Bombay Reef.”
Servallos, N. J., & Ayeng, R. (2019, May 22). ‘China’s most destructive boats’ again poaching at Scarborough. The Manila Times, pp. A1, A2.
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- The Manila Times