US Sends a “Warning” to China Against Targeting the Philippine Coast Guard

CRASH AVERTED This photo taken on April 23, 2023 shows BRP Malapascua (right) maneuvering as a Chinese coast guard ship cuts its path at Second Thomas Shoal in the Spratly Islands. AFP PHOTO

A Reuters report, “U.S. issues guidelines on defending Philippines from South China Sea attack” indicates the US would consider an attack on the Philippine Coast Guard grounds for invoking the Mutual Defense Treaty between the US and the Philippines.

There was more to it than that, but certainly the recent confrontations between the Philippine CG and China CG and maritime militia must have prompted this clarification.

Perhaps less obvious, is that, apparently, it would also activate the treaty if a US Coast Guard vessel were attacked in the South China Sea.

“The guidelines said the bilateral treaty commitments would be invoked if either is attacked specifically in the South China Sea and also if coast guard vessels were the target.”

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