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HomeLatest NewsNetflix Pulls Out Two Episodes of ‘Pine Gap’ Showing China’s Nine-Dash Line

Netflix Pulls Out Two Episodes of ‘Pine Gap’ Showing China’s Nine-Dash Line

It sparked outrage among the viewers, mostly Filipinos.

Netflix removed two episodes of Australian political drama Pine Gap on November 1 after the Philippine government complained for its portrayal of China’s illegal claims in the South China Sea, which includes the West Philippine Sea.

According to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) filed a complaint dated September 28 to pull out two episodes of the series that shows a map of China’s nine-dash line, which is considered as illegal by the international court. (Read: LOOK: Pag-asa Research Station Opens in West Philippine Sea)

Decision of DFA and MTRCB

In a statement, the DFA said that after a thorough review, the Board ruled that certain episodes of Pine Gap are “unfit for public exhibition.” 

“Under a whole-of-nation approach, every instrumentality of the government, whenever presented with the opportunity, has the responsibility to counter China’s aggressive actions in the West Philippine Sea to assert the Philippines’ territorial integrity. It further noted that the portrayal of the illegal nine-dash line in Pine Gap is no accident as it was consciously designed and calculated to specifically convey a message that China’s nine-dash line legitimately exists,” the MTRCB underscored.

The video thumbnails of episode two and three are noted with “This episode removed by government demand.” (Read: Timeline: The West Philippine Sea Dispute Against China)

“Such portrayal is a crafty attempt to perpetuate and memorialize in the consciousness of the present generation of viewers and the generations to come the illegal nine-dash line. Using the medium of a motion picture is but China’s unconventional approach to gain an upper hand in the territorial conflict in the South China Sea/West Philippine Sea,” the Board added.

What is nine-dash line?

Photo from Quora

The nine-dash line is the “U-shaped” line representing the maximum extent of Chinese historical claims within the South China Sea, including the Paracel, Spratly, Zhongsha, Pratas, and Scarborough Shoal islands. 

In 2013, the Philippines filed a case with the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) at The Hague in the Netherlands, challenging China’s nine-dash line claim, which covers parts of the West Philippine Sea.

The Hague panel invalidated the nine-dash demarcation in 2016, upholding the sovereignty of the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ). However, China continues to reject the ruling. (Read: Timeline: Duterte’s Stand on the West Philippine Sea Over the Years)

Aside from the Philippines, Southeast Asian countries such as Vietnam and Malaysia have been criticizing China for using the nine-dash protocol on its map to legitimize its claim on the South China Sea.

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