Taiwan investigators arrive in Manila

Source:Global Times–Agencies Published: 2013-5-17 0:18:02

Read more in Daily Specials: Manila ready to apologize for fisherman's death

An investigation team from Taiwan arrived in Manila Thursday morning to look into the Philippine Coast Guard's fatal shooting of a Taiwanese fisherman on May 9, as Taiwan staged a military drill in its southern waters.

The investigators, consisting of representatives from Taiwan's justice, foreign affairs, police and maritime departments, said upon arrival that they would conduct thorough investigations as soon as possible into the incident that led to the death of 65-year-old fisherman Huang Shih-cheng, according to Taiwan's Central News Agency.

Also on Thursday, several Taiwanese naval vessels, coast guard ships and fighter jets conducted a fishery protection drill in waters south of the island, marking the first time for Taiwanese naval vessels to cross the "temporary enforcement line" at 20 degrees north latitude, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

Tensions between Taiwan and the Philippines have been mounting as Manila failed to make the sincere apology Taiwan has been requesting.

"We did what a decent member, a respectable member of the international community, should have done," Philippine presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda insisted Thursday during a press conference.

On Wednesday, Taiwan slapped a series of sanctions on the Philippines, including a "red" travel alert urging locals not to visit the country and the suspension of exchanges between high-level officials, among other measures.

Lacierda said the country has prepared a contingency plan to deal with the sanctions imposed by Taiwan, adding that the sanctions would not do either side any good.

Taiwan's leader Ma Ying-jeou Thursday reiterated that the Philippines should take responsibility for the fisherman's death, saying that shooting unarmed and innocent people in the open seas is not an act tolerated by civilized nations.

Philippine President Benigno Aquino earlier sent his envoy Amadeo Perez, chairman of the Manila Economic and Cultural Office, to Taiwan to "make an apology," who left Thursday after Taiwan's "foreign minister" David Lin and the victim's family refused to meet him, AFP reported.

To guarantee the fishermen's safety, Taiwan's legislature may pass a law allowing commercial ships to hire private security guards and be equipped with firearms, ammunition and knives to protect themselves against threat of force, the Taipei-based China Times reported.

Global Times - Agencies

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