Photo from: Oceana Philippines
Finally, in a bid to assert our country’s sovereignty over the resource-rich waters, President Rodrigo Duterte renamed Benham Rise to Philippine Rise.
This was made official when the president signed Executive Order No. 25, changing the 13-million hectare area undersea landmass off Aurora.
From the EO:
“All departments, subdivisions, agencies, and instrumentalities of the government shall henceforth use and employ the name ‘Philippine Rise’ in all official documents in referring to the undersea feature.”
Early in April, the president already made a proposal to rename Benham Rise. This was amid the alleged presence of Chinese ships in the area. China has said that they were just passing through the area and gave assurance the Philippines that they “fully respect and recognize the sovereign rights of the Philippines.”
Benham Rise is a new addition to the Philippine territory. The United Nations awarded it to the country when it was proven to be part of Isabela province’s extended continental shelf.
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