Pres. Duterte, not apologetic to Pres. Xi in raising arbitral ruling during his China visit

Maris Federez   •   September 4, 2019   •   1126

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping

There is no truth to the reports that President Rodrigo Duterte had been apologetic to President Xi Jinping when the former raised the arbitral ruling in the South China Sea in his recent visit to China.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Locsin, Jr said the reports were a total fabrication and a complete lie.

“The reports that the President was apologetic in raising the arbitral award is a total fabrication, and in every aspect a complete lie. On the contrary, the President has, in my experience in his visits to China, always raise the Arbitral Award,” Locsin stressed.

Locsin also maintained that the president had been firm in insisting that China has to seek permission from the Philippine government before any of its warships incurs in Philippine waters.

“By insisting on, the President I admire him for this, on permission. But by China saying, yes we will ask for permission, we are now on the side of China in the revision of UNCLOS which is now asking for permission,” the DFA head added.

The official added that the Philippine government had been filing diplomatic protests to insist on the country’s rights in the disputed territory.

“And we have not withdrawn from a single square inch of what we claim is ours,” Locsin underscored.

The Philippines has filed 60 diplomatic protests under the Duterte administration. (from the report of Joan Nano) /mbmf
 

Coalition calls for strong enforcement of 2016 arbitral ruling anew

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Several groups have called anew for the strong enforcement of the 2016 arbitral ruling.

The group Citizens Alliance for Life and the Law of the Sea (CALL of the Sea) called on the Duterte Administration to strongly implement the arbitral ruling regarding the West Philippine Sea. The 2016 arbitral ruling affirmed the Philippines’ territorial claims in the South China Sea against China’s claims.

“What we must now need, moving forward is for us Filipinos and national leaders to speak as one with a clear unmistakable, consistent and emphatic voice on the enforcement of the arbitral award,” according to Atty. Joey Lina, convener of CALL of the Sea.

According to 1Sambayan led by its convener, retired Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Carpio, only Filipinos have the right to the country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

“The constitution expressly declares the stay, the use of reserves and enjoyment of the nations marine wealth in its exclusive economic zone solely to Filipino citizens, clearly the president has no power to allow Chinese fishermen to fish in our exclusive economic zone in the West Philippine Sea,

Former Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Dr. Albert Del Rosario also said that President Rodrigo Duterte betrayed the constitution due to his previous statements regarding the West Philippine Sea.

“Last May 10, 2021, the President claimed his pledge to will ride a jet ski to the Spratlys, plant the Philippine flag there was a pure campaign joke. calling those who believed him as being stupid. This episode contributes to a widening belief among our countrymen that President Duterte betrayed the constitution he swore to uphold, and consequently betrayed his countrymen who rely on him to protect the West Philippine sea,” he said.

Meanwhile, Department of National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the government is not giving up any natural resources in the country’s EEZ.

“We should also propagate an objective understanding of issues surrounding the West Philippine Sea to avoid being clouded by pure emotions which are being exploited by those who seek to divide rather than to unite us in our common goal. On the economic implications of the issue, we need to consistently acknowledge that the natural resources within our EEZ are for our exclusive exploitation,” he said. AAC (with reports from Nel Maribojoc)

Locsin says arbitral award on South China Sea is ‘final’ ; urges nations to follow rule of law

Marje Pelayo   •   June 23, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Locsin Jr. on Wednesday (June 23) maintained that the arbitral award that clarified the Philippines’ maritime rights in the South China Sea is final.

“The award is final. We firmly reject attempts to undermine it; nay, even erase it from law, history and our collective memories,” Locsin said.

Locsin issued a statement coinciding with the fifth anniversary of the Philippines’ victory in the arbitration case.

“The award conclusively settled the status of historic rights and maritime entitlements in the South China Sea,” he said.

“In summary, the award gives littoral states guideposts on how much waters their features — be they islands or rocks — can generate, where their fishermen can fish, where they can exercise law enforcement patrols, where they can send their ships without permission from the nearest state, without creating a cause of action or a casus belli (Latin term for an act used to justify a war) between them,” he added.

China claims ownership of almost the entire South China Sea on the basis of a nine-dash line.

The Permanent Court of Arbitration on July 12, 2016 debunked this claim ruling in favor of the lawsuit filed by the Philippines.

China, however, maintains it does not recognize the ruling even if tensions escalate also with other claimant countries in the area.

Through the end of Locsin’s statement, the official urges other countries to follow the rule of law.

“The present that we need and the future that we want is a peaceful South China Sea. The Philippines is committed to this for as long as it exists. For as long as nations abide by the rule of law and not of military might, the Award is the North Star that will keep us on course in the present, and that will point us back to the right direction in the future should we, in a moment of weakness or inaction, lose our way,” the Foreaign Affairs chief said.

Duterte: I asked Chinese Pres. Xi Jinping for help on COVID-19 vaccines but no talks on WPS

Robie de Guzman   •   May 11, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday disclosed that he asked help from his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in obtaining COVID-19 vaccines but insisted that they did not discuss issues on the West Philippine Sea.

During his Talk to the People public address on Monday night, Duterte recalled how he called Xi when the Philippines had yet to get any supply of COVID-19 vaccines.

“Let me just also say na itong history na… for public consumption na ito. Tumawag ako kay President Xi Jinping, sinabi ko kasi noong kasagsagan ng walang dumating talaga, walang makapkap si Secretary (Carlito) Galvez (Jr.), tumawag ako, sabi ko, ‘Mr. President (Xi), I would like to ask for your help until now Philippines is at a loss on how to get vaccines,’” he said.

“Sabi niya, ‘it’s okay we will help you.’ Ganoon lang. Hindi naman sinabi na kalimutan mo yung Scarborough Shoal, bigyan kita… Sinabi niya lang as simple as that,” he added.

The Philippines first received 600,000 doses of Sinovac COVID-19 vaccines that were donated by the Chinese government on February 28. The national government used this supply to roll out its vaccination program on March 1.

In total, the Philippines has received 1 million donated Sinovac vaccine doses from China, including the 400,000 doses that were delivered in March.

Duterte stood by his earlier statement that the Philippines owes a debt of gratitude to China for all its help but emphasized that there would be no compromise on the West Philippine Sea issue.

“It’s never, never wrong to say that I owe you a debt of gratitude. Totoo eh, binigyan tayo, tinanggap natin, ginamit natin,” he said.

“But it does not mean na tanggapin ko ang bakuna tapos sabihin ko kalimutan ko na yung claim diyan sa West Philippine sea, okay na yun dahil sa bakuna… It was never like that, the world does not operate like that,” he added.

He said there would be no compromise on the issue and that China knows it.

“Maski bahain tayo dito ng vaccine, gagamitin ko pa rin pero sabihin ko ‘hindi ito kabayaran’. Iba ito. This is a Philippine national interest, this is not a health issue that nagpasalamat ako,” he said.

Correction:
An earlier version of this article misstated that “they did discuss issues.” 

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