Philippines to Open Coast Guard Base 93 Miles from Taiwan

On May 24, the Philippine Coast Guard opened a monitoring base on Itbayat Island, the Philippines’s northernmost inhabited island, according to the Philippines National Security Advisor Eduardo Ano. The Coast Guard base is only 93 miles (150 kilometers) away from the Taiwanese mainland. 

This announcement comes as the armed forces of China engaged in military drills surrounding Taiwan. The drills, titled “Joint Sword-2024A” effectively surrounded Taiwan on May 23 and 24, according to Taiwan News. This drill comes soon after the May 20 inauguration of Taiwanese President Lai Ching-te. 

China has increasingly engaged in aggressive actions against both the Philippines and Taiwan. China has shown no signs of backing down on its claims on features/islands in the South China Sea and has utilized violent, but non-lethal actions to maintain those claims.