Information about the Benham Plateau exposed!
BENHAM PLATEAU – Recently, one of the topics that have sparked lots of news headlines is the Benham Plateau or more commonly known as the Benham Rise.
Based on a recent news report in Phil Star Global, the foreign ministry spokesperson of Beijing, Geng Shuang, has expressed that the Philippines cannot claim ownership over the Benham Rise.
According to the report, the statement of Beijing’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson came after the Philippines’ Defense Secretary, Delfin Lorenzana, commanded the Navy to send away the Chinese vessels after reports that the Chinese ships were spotted near the undersea region.
However, Pres. Rodrigo Roa Duterte expressed that it was just for the purpose of research.
On getting to know about the Benham Rise more, based on the video posted by the source, it was admiral Andrew Benham who discovered an undersea region that could be found 250 kilometers east of Dinapigue, Isabel.
The vastness of the said region, which is now known as the Benham Rise, was 13-million hectare and it stretches from coasts of Bicol and Cagayan until 300 nautical miles in the Pacific Ocean.
Moreover, based on the video, the Philippines in 2009 submitted before the United Nations a claim that the Benham Rise is part of the country’s continental shelf and territory.
According to the video, it was on the 12th day of April 2012 in which the 2009 submission of the country was approved by the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS).
It led to the increase of the country’s total land area – from 30 million hectares to 43 million hectares.
It is also stated in the video that the recognition of the CLCS is aligned with the 1982 Law of the Sea Convention (UNCLOS).
Moreover, since the Philippines has made a declaration regarding its exclusive economic zone (EZZ) during the late 1970s, the country’s possession of the said undersea region is its first maritime boundaries great expansion.
Based on the video, the people who are living in Catanduanes called the Benham Rise as a forlorn place. The Catanduanes fisherfolks love to fish at the undersea region.
“Under the 1982 UNCLOS, a state has sovereign rights over its continental shelf for the purpose of ‘exploring it and exploiting its natural resources.”
“Freedom of navigation and overflight may be exercised in Benham Rise but the Philippines has exclusive sovereign rights to explore and exploit living and non-living natural resources of both the EEZ and the seabed underneath.”
Based on a previous news report, one solon, Magdalo Rep. Gary Alejano, has already expressed that Pres. Duterte may face removal from office in case he would fail in safeduarding the said Philippine territory.
Reportedly, the undersea region is rich in minerals and natural gas deposits.