MANILA — Malacañang expressed hope on Saturday that the relationship between the Philippines and Taiwan would not be affected by the recent shooting incident involving the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) resulting in the death of a Taiwanese fisherman.
In an interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan, deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said that investigation has been ongoing on the incident.
“Hopefully, it won’t,” she said when asked of the possible effect on the relationship of the Philippines and Taiwan of the shooting incident.
The PCG personnel who were on board the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) vessel detected four foreign fishing boats off northern Philippines. When the Coast Guard personnel tried to board one of the Taiwanese fishing boats, another foreign vessel reportedly rammed the BFAR ship. Philippine authorities fired a warning shot, but the Taiwanese boat reportedly continued ramming the BFAR vessel. Another shot was made and a Taiwanese fisherman was hit, resulting to his death.
“The investigation is already underway by the PCG,” Valte said.
She said that some of the PCG personnel who were involved in the incident were relieved pending the investigation.
“At this point, what the PCG said is that they want a transparent and an impartial and objective investigation so it was just their standard...that they will not be able to cast doubt on the investigation that is being conducted by the PCG,” she explained.