6:39 am | Saturday, May 25th, 2013
MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) is expected to release next week its report on the grounding of the US Navy minesweeper, the Guardian, at the Tubbataha Reef last Jan. 17.
According to PCG spokesperson Commander Armand Balilo, the report is about 90-percent complete. It will be submitted next week to Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya who will then forward it to President Aquino.
According to Balilo, the report will include what actually happened or what caused the incident, as well as measures and recommendations to prevent its recurring.
The 68-meter long Guardian ran aground at the Tubbataha Reef and damaged more than 1,500 square meters of the reef, which the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) has declared a World Heritage Site.
The Guardian was cut into pieces and removed from the reef last March 30.
The US government has committed to rehabilitate the portion of the reef that was damaged by the Guardian but its discussions with the Department of Foreign Affairs on the matter have been kept confidential. Tina G. Santos
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