Immigration to resume stamping China passports with nine-dash-line map

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 6) — After seven years, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) will resume stamping the country's visa on Chinese passports that has the nine-dash-line map printed on them.

Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said on Tuesday this was in compliance with a Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) circular reversing a 2012 order stopping the stamping of Chinese passports to protest its "excessive claim over almost the entire South China Sea, including the West Philippine Sea." In an effort to invalidate China's territorial claims, then-Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario required Philippine visa stamps to be placed on a piece of paper, rather than the passport itself.

Morente said all Philippine consular officers are now ordered to affix the Philippine visa on the pages of Chinese passports where the nine-dash line map is printed.

The Philippine map, with territorial boundaries around the disputed waters, will be stamped on top of the Chinese map in the passport.

An international arbitral tribunal in July 2016 invalidated Beijing's sweeping nine-dash-line claim and recognized the Philippines' sovereign rights over some areas in its exclusive economic zone.