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PUERTO PRINCESA, Philippines – Philippine officials say China is pressing ahead with the construction of artificial islands on at least two reefs that are also claimed by Manila despite Beijing's pronouncement that some work would end soon.
Mayor Eugenio Bito-onon from Kalayaan island, which is under Philippine control in the disputed Spratly chain of the South China Sea, said Friday that he flew near the Chinese-controlled Subi Reef and saw that construction was in full swing with many dredgers and a huge crane visible on the emerging man-made island.
Two senior Philippine military officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak to the media, say China's island-building has also continued at Mischief Reef, based on recent surveillance flights.
Chinese Embassy officials in Manila did not immediately comment.