Greater Philippines is an irredentist concept in the Philippines supporting the inclusion of eastern Sabah as a part of the country's territory. The term may also extend to various other proposed scenarios that include any or all of the following: Scarborough Shoal, the Macclesfield Bank, and the Spratly Islands (officially claimed by the government as the Kalayaan Islands).
Areas under the concept
The Philippine Archipelago is the core component of Greater Philippines. As described in Article 1 of the 1987 Constitution, the Philippine Archipelago is part of Philippine territory. This provision has appeared in the 1935 Philippine Constitution for the first time, as the 1899 Malolos Constitution has specified only the areas under Spanish control, including the rest of the Spanish East Indies.
The Philippine claim for the Spratly Islands was based on the voyage and the annexation of Admiral Tomás Cloma, Sr., who relinquished all his rights to the Philippine government in the 1970s. The claim for the Kalayaan group was enshrined in the 1973 Philippine Constitution and in later versions.
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The Philippine government also claims Scarborough Shoal, which it calls Bajo de Masinloc and Panatag Shoal, as part of its territory, citing its position within the country's Exclusive Economic Zone. The Philippines places the shoal under the jurisdiction of Masinloc, Zambales, which is on the Luzon mainland 124 nautical miles to the east.
Sultanate of Sulu
The Sultanate of Sulu came under the control of the then American controlled Philippines in 1917. Sulu had then the control of eastern Sabah, which was leased to Great Britain. As the Sultan of Sulu relinquished all of his rights to eastern Sabah to the Philippines, the rental payment then was received by the Philippines as successor state of Sulu. In 1963, Great Britain included Sabah in the newly formed Federation of Malaysia. The Philippine government under the then President of the Philippines Diosdado Macapagal protested, and, filed claims to whole Sabah. This caused escalating tensions between the two countries that, the Philippines even planned to declare war[dubious ] and invade the whole Sabah ,[clarification needed] but was only prevented by the new President Ferdinand Marcos. To avoid further tensions, the Malaysian government agreed to continue the lease to the Philippine government.
During the formation of Malaysia, the Federation of Malaya signed the Manila Accord along with the Malaysia Act 1963. These acts solidified the position regarding claim of North Borneo by the Philippines following the establishment of Malaysia.
Per international law, the Malaysian government, as a predecessor state to Malaysia, agreed to abide by the wishes of the peoples of North Borneo and Sarawak within the context of United Nations General Assembly Resolution 1541 (XV), Principle 9 of the Annex, which was created to complete compliance with the principle of self-determination. International law also took into account referendums in North Borneo and Sarawak that would be free and without coercion.
Other irredentist concepts
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It has been confirmed[by whom?] that, based on studies, the Philippines "may also" find claims to Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Palau and the Federated States of Micronesia, which were also part of Philippine territory before 1898. These islands all formed part of the Spanish East Indies and the Captaincy General of the Philippines.
- Spanish East Indies
- Spanish Formosa
- Captaincy General of the Philippines
- Philippine nationalism
- Greater Mexico
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Map of British North Borneo, highlighting in yellow colour the area covered by the Philippine claim, presented to the Court by the Philippines during the Oral Hearings at the ICJ on 25 June 2001
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