DND: More concrete blocks seen in Scarborough
MANILA – The Department of National Defense (DND) on Wednesday said more concrete blocks have been spotted in the disputed Scarborough Shoal.
DND spokesman Peter Paul Galvez said there are 75 blocks scattered in a 2-hectare area in the northern portion of the Bajo de Masinloc, proof that China is preparing to construct structures in the disputed territory.
Over the weekend, the DND said only around 30 concrete blocks were spotted, but Galvez said it is possible that some of the blocks were not spotted by the reconnaissance flight.
The DND also reported that 3 Chinese vessels were recently seen in the area. The Philippines and China are both claiming the territory.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines, meanwhile, said it is monitoring activity at the disputed area.
"Right now, the orders given to us is to monitor. That is our current mission and that we are fulfilling," said AFP public affairs office chief Lt. Col. Ramon Zagala.
"We have to stay on track with what our government is doing right now and our government is pursuing a peaceful solution, through protest, through arbitration," he added. -- With a report from Abner Mercado, ABS-CBN News