THE PHILIPPINE Coast Guard (PCG) reported on Sunday that it drove off last week seven foreign-flagged fishing vessels from waters around the Marie Louise Bank, a part of the Philippine exclusive economic zone in the South China Sea. 

In a statement with accompanying video footages posted on its social media pages, the PCG said its BRP Cabra vessel “successfully dispersed” five Chinese and two Vietnamese ships on June 30. 

The Marie Louise Bank is located 147 nautical miles off El Nido, Palawan and is part of the Spratly Islands.

The video clips showed Coast Guard officers on board the BRP Cabra sending radio challenge to the foreign vessels. A radio challenge involves an assertion of the Philippine territory and demand for details of the vessel in question. 

The ending video clip also showed a PCG team checking on a Philippine vessel with 34 Filipino fishermen from San Jose, Occidental Mindoro.

“The Filipino fishermen said they were able to conduct normal fishing operations in the past two weeks without any untoward incidents at sea,” the PCG said. — MSJ