Dozens of Filipino youths rallied on Friday outside of the Chinese Consulate in Manila to protest against China’s alleged deployment of surface-to-air missiles on a contested island in the South China Sea, saying the move threatens regional security. The protesters from the political party Kabataan Partylist chanted anti-China slogans outside of the Chinese consulate in Makati City, Manila, while waving signs painted with slogans including “China out of Philippines territory!” and “No to Chinese aggression in western seas!”, according to witnesses. Beijing reportedly set up a surface-to-air missile system in the Paracel Islands, just 56 kilometers (35 miles) from Filipino shores following the construction of airstrips and army installations. The establishment of a surface-to-air missile system on Woody Island of the contested South China Sea archipelago was first reported by the American media earlier this week and confirmed on Wednesday by Taiwanese military sources. “While the Chinese Paracel Islands are not part of the Philippines’ claimed territory, the presence of Chinese military is an ‘act of war’,” Kabataan Partylist tweeted, quoting Filipino left-wing lawmakers Bayan Muna.
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