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Traveler waves Philippine flag on sandbar near Pag-asa Island

MANILA, Philippines — A Filipino travel enthusiast waved the Philippine flag on a sandbar near the contested Pag-asa Island in the West Philippine Sea, as seen in a circulating video, despite the presence of Chinese ships.

Cheenie Landayan joined a tourist group that visited Pag-asa Island earlier this month and was captured by a companion moving across the sandbar waving the Philippine flag.

The travel enthusiast told ABS-CBN that during the trip, their vessel was shadowed by China Coast Guard vessels.

"Yes, nagawa namin! Nagawa namin," Landayan told the media outlet. "Ang galing, ang galing ng moment. Atin 'tong sandy Cay na ito. Atin 'tong Spratlys, iyon 'yong feeling."

She also shared being cautioned by local fishermen with the Chinese Coast Guard on patrol, admitting there was some fear in the surroundings.

"Nakakatakot, siyempre. Nakakanginig din ng tuhod 'yung experience kasi doon pa lang makita mo may mga Chinese vessels nga na puwedeng pumunta agad, puwede kaming habulin," Landayan said.

China asserts sovereignty over almost the entire West Philippine Sea, despite an international court ruling in 2016 that deemed its stance to have no legal basis. — with reports from Gaea Cabico

RELATED: China issues radio challenge to aircraft of senators visiting Pag-asa Island

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Credit belongs to : www.philstar.com

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