“Chinese Coast Guard vessels approached the boats of our fellow fishermen but only to share their food, liquor and cigarettes,” said Wilson Almadin, a crew member of a fishing boat that returned to this town from Panatag on Monday.
Almadin also said other Filipino fishermen even shared some of their catch with their former enemies on the sea,
Eight groups of fishermen from Zambales tried their luck to Panatag Shoal or internationally known as Scarborough Shoal last on Oct. 26, upon finding out that they could enter the area without tension the Chinese Coast Guard
They have been blockading the rich fishing ground since 2012.
“We’re now free to fish around the shoal. There’s no tension there …. As long as we will be allowed to stay and fish around the shoal, I think we can coexist with the Chinese Coast Guard,” Almadin said.
“Our President has been true to his promise to help us return to the shoal and we’re thankful for that. We’re hoping that Filipinos will no longer fear being harassed by the Chinese Coast Guard,” said Ronald Polo, another fisherman.
Fishermen are happy to catch talakitok, yellow fin tuna, skipjack, blue marlin and red grouper, which are usually not found anywhere else.