China Coast Guard donates relief goods, face masks to Taal victims
The China Coast Guard (CCG) Tuesday donated face masks and relief goods for residents affected by the Taal Volcano eruption as they visit the country for the first time.
Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Commandant Admiral Joel Garcia said the donations were part of the provisions of the crew of the CCG vessel 5204 which arrived in Manila Bay on Monday.
"Earlier they (CCG) said they gave donations from the provisions of their ship's crew and aside from food donations, they also give N95 face mask to help our people in the cities and municipalities affected by Taal," he said.
The CCG donations were turned over to the Philippine Coast Guard after the arrival honors given to them at the PCG headquarters in Manila on Tuesday morning.
According to PCG, the CCG donated 600 pieces of N95 face masks and boxes of food packs.
"The donations will be transported to affected areas in Batangas due to the phreatic eruption of Taal Volcano," the PCG said.
During the arrival honors, the Chinese delegates headed by CCG Director General, Major General Wang Zhongcai were welcomed by Garcia.
Garcia said the weeklong activities between PCG and CCG was discussed during his meeting with his Chinese counterpart after the ceremony.
Garcia said during bilateral talks with CCG, the PCG will push for a mechanism that will ensure safety and security of Filipino fishermen in the South China Sea and West Philippine Sea.
"It should be discussed once and for all the safety of our fishermen in South China Sea and in West Philippine Sea," he said.
"We will push for a mechanism. All of coast guard, Chinese or Filipino should follow this mechanism that will give safety and security for the fishermen," he added.
This is the first time the PCG and CCG sits down to enhance relationship and establish smooth coordination in relation to maritime search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, maritime safety, marine environmental protection, and maritime security in compliance to the directive of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte for the PCG to develop strong diplomatic relations with CCG, Garcia said.
The PCG personnel, led by Garcia, were welcomed by Wang as they conduct tour or cross deck visit on the CCG ship on the same day.
"During the short meeting inside CCG Vessel 5204, Director General Zhongcai shared that President Xi Jinping has high regard on cooperation and sincere diplomacy with the Philippines and CCG’s port call in Manila is a major initiative to achieving such goal towards peace, cooperation, and harmony between Philippines and China," the PCG said.
"CCG’s port call in Manila is intended to enhance cooperation and understanding between Philippines and China, specifically in the conduct of patrol operations in a way that will not instigate provocation," it added.
The PCG and CCG are scheduled to conduct maritime search and rescue exercise, goodwill games and passing exercise during the port visit ending on January 17. Robina Asido/DMS