For some Filipino fishermen, the South China Sea dispute is personal

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When nations duel over reefs, rocks and islets, people are going to get hurt, and in the South China Sea dispute, that means the fishermen here who once wrested a living from the contested waters.

Gunmen in a Chinese speedboat drove Macario Forones, for instance, away from a favorite spot called Scarborough Shoal, and now his boat, the Marvin-1, sits useless in the grass and weeds above the high-tide line, and he sells someone else’s fish from a stall in the local market. Efrim Forones now dives for clams in the bay, making about one-tenth of what he earned when he fished the sea. Viany Mula says he was set upon with a Chinese water cannon when he ventured out to the shoal in his boat, and now he makes deliveries around town on a motorbike, barely earning enough each day, as he puts it, to buy the rice he needs.

“I really want to fish the shoal,” Mula said one recent day. “It’s a very rich fishing ground. But that’s not possible now.”

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/for-some-filipinos-the-south-china-sea-dispute-is-personal/2015/06/06/e77d373a-086c-11e5-951e-8e15090d64ae_story.html

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