Amid the call of Philippines for a moratorium on reclamation activities in South China Sea including the West Philippines Sea, China did not accept the call to stop any activity, rather, Chinese government asked Philippines to leave Spratly Islands including Pagasa Island.
Pagasa Island is the largest Philippine occupied island in Spratly Islands and is the municipality center of Kalayaan.
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying said in a press conference, “Since the 1970s, the Philippines has illegally and forcefully occupied parts of China’s Nansha Islands (Spratly Islands) including the Zhongye Island (Pagasa Island), in violation of the UN Charter and principles of international law. We demand the Philippines to withdraw all its facilities and personnel on islands illegally seized from China.”
“In January this year, the Philippines’ military officials again announced their plans to build a world-class airport on the so-called Kalayyan [Kalayaan Municipality in Pagasa] Island,” Hua Chunying noted.
“We stand ready to work with relevant countries, strictly follow the DOC and jointly safeguard peace and stability of the South China Sea,” she added.