TAIPEI-MANILA ROW: US
lawmakers urge Manila to apologize over shooting
By William Lowther / Staff reporter in Washington
Two leading members of the US Congress urged the Philippines to ¡§promptly and
sincerely¡¨ apologize to Taiwan over the recent shooting of a Taiwanese
They also urged that those responsible for the shooting be punished and that the
victim¡¦s family be compensated.
US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific
Chairman Steve Chabot and ranking member Eni Faleomaveaga issued a joint
statement on Wednesday strongly indicating their support for Taiwan in the
¡§A government vessel¡¦s shooting of an unarmed fishing boat is an act of violence
and is in violation of international law,¡¨ the statement said.
Chabot, a Republican, and Faleomaveaga, a Democrat, were both in Taiwan earlier
this month and visited former president Chen Shui-bian (³¯¤ô«ó) in a prison
¡§We call upon the Philippines to promptly and sincerely respond to the requests
of the Taiwan government to apologize, punish the perpetrators and provide
proper compensation to the victim¡¦s family based on humanitarian grounds,¡¨ the
joint statement said.
The statement said that the Taiwanese fishing boat was fired upon in waters 164
nautical miles (304km) southeast of Oluanpi (ÃZÆq»ó) ¡X ¡§waters considered by both
Taiwan and the Philippines to be within Taiwan¡¦s 200 nautical-mile-from-shore
Exclusive Economic Zone.¡¨
It said the boat was severely damaged and that fisherman Hung Shih-cheng (¬x¥Û¦¨)
was shot and killed.
¡§The Philippine government vessel sailed away without offering any assistance,¡¨
the statement said.
Chabot and Faleomaveaga both expressed their condolences to the family and
friends of Hung.
¡§It is imperative that these two close and longstanding allies of the United
States work together for an immediate and peaceful resolution of this incident,¡¨
the statement said.
¡§The circumstances that have given rise to such an incident must be addressed so
as to guarantee as much as possible that such an incident will never happen
again,¡¨ it said.
Chabot and Faleomaveaga said that ultimately an agreement or treaty o-n marine
fishing must be negotiated between Taipei and Manila.