Filipinos Burn US Flag Ahead Of APEC Summit 2015
Activists burned mock American flags on Wednesday as way of protest against U.S. meddling in the dispute between the Philippines and China over the South China Sea. Among the banners held by protesters read “no to imperialist globalism,” “Junk VFA, US troops out now,” and “No to imperialist plunder.”Advertisement
The protest was held at the U.S. Embassy. The activists were also rallying against China’s incursion of the contested islands and against Japan for its military intervention over the disputed region. Other banners read “China out of PH waters” and “Keep their dirty hands off the Philippines.” Rallies are expected to take place for the whole week of the summit. (Is WW3 happening in the South China Sea?)
Marciano Paynor Jr., head of the National Organizing Committee of APEC Philippines 2015, told CNN that there are no credible threats against any of the leaders attending the summit. Nevertheless, they always assume that there are threats. “Each of these individuals, on their own, have threats. Any such threats that we don’t know about are usually conveyed to us by their respective security services. So these are discussed at an executive session,” Paynor said. He added that Chinese president Xi Jinping, Mr. Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin are among leaders with “high threats.” Mr. Putin had opted out of the summit and is sending a representative instead.
Charisse Banez, leader of one of the activists group who are rallying ahead of the summit, told Inquirer that their protest “aims to denounce China’s heightening incursion and the United States and Japan’s increased military intervention in the country.”
Teddy Casino, spokesperson for another rallying group, said U.S. and China “are playing a dangerous game of one-up me around” the disputed islands. At the end, these major powers have their own ulterior motives to the disadvantage of the Philippines. “We are here to send a message to the leaders of these countries not to use the Philippines as a pawn in their game. The most likely thing that could happen is that in the end, these superpowers will connive with each other and get what they want with the Philippines getting nothing,” he told Inquirer.