Pres. Duterte Asserts PH Rights on West Philippine Sea amid Acknowledging Gratitude to China
DUTERTE – Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte broke his silence on PH’s gratitude to China and the West Philippine Sea issue.
Undeniably, one of the national governments closest to the Duterte administration is the Chinese government. However, there is a long territorial dispute between the two (2) countries.
The Philippines and China are claiming rights over the West Philippine Sea. The said issue has even reached the Arbitral Tribunal which favored the former on the rights over the disputed island. However, the said decision did not urge the latter to pull its claims over the place.
In fact, until now, there are several Chinese vessels in the disputed island. The tension between the two (2) countries has recently spiked again.
China is one of the nations that donated COVID-19 vaccines to the Philippines. Recently, Pres. Rodrigo Roa Duterte broke his silence on the country’s gratitude to China and the West Philippine Sea issue.
Based on a report on ABS-CBN News, the President stressed that the Philippines does not want “war with China” whom he described as a “good friend”. He also acknowledged the gratitude of the country to China over its assistance including the donated COVID019 vaccines.
However, Pres. Duterte also stressed that there are some things that cannot be bargained and it includes the Philippines’ rights on the West Philippine Sea. Based on the report, the Chief Executive expressed that the Philippine vessels must not leave the area under Chinese orders.
“There are things which are not really subject to a compromise… Sana they will understand, but I have the interest also of my country to protect,” the President said.
According to Pres. Duterte, the dispute is over as there is already a decision but China does not want to abide by the ruling. On the part of the Philippines, he stressed that the country is at a loss on how to physically get the disputed island back.
The Chief Executive said that when his term as president started, the country is already at a loss as China is asserting its claims. He also said that the United States failed to send its ships amid the standoff between the two (2) nations.
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