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PH to reconsider relationship with China if principles are ignored

PH to push back ties with China if sworn principles are ignored

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. stated Monday that the Philippines would work with China but would forfeit its alliance if South China Sea issues were ignored.

“We pursue with the People’s Republic of China Comprehensive Strategic Cooperation founded on mutual respect and mutual benefit,” President Marcos said in his speech at the Lowy Institute Peace and Resilient Amidst Great Power Rivalries.

However, the President vowed to “push back ties” if the nation’s professed ideals were doubted or disregarded.

“Our independent foreign policy compels us to cooperate with them on matters where our interests align, to disagree on areas where our views differ respectfully, and to push back when our sworn principles, such as our sovereignty, sovereign rights, and our jurisdiction in the West Philippine Sea – are questioned or ignored,” he said.

The Chinese government continues to ignore the universal and unified character of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the final and binding determinations of the South China Sea Arbitration Award of 2016.

“It is unfortunate that despite the clarity provided by international law, provocative, unilateral, and illegal actions continue to infringe upon our sovereignty, sovereign rights, and jurisdictions,” Marcos stated.

“As a country committed to the cause of peace and the peaceful settlement of disputes, the Philippines continues to tread the path of dialogue and diplomacy despite these serious difficulties,” he added.

The President also stated that the Philippines’ adherence to the 2002 ASEAN-China Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea remains. 

The country is committed to working with ASEAN and China towards a practical and substantive Code of Conduct (COC) “that finds its moorings in UNCLOS and respects the interest of all stakeholders, including Australia.”

He pledged to maintain the country’s territorial integrity and not allow foreign capitals to change its definition. Marcos also approved the updated acquisition plan for the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Re-Horizon 3, in line with the Comprehensive Archipelagic Defense Concept. 

The President emphasized the need for Philippine forces to ensure peaceful exploration and exploitation of natural resources in areas under the country’s jurisdiction, including its exclusive economic zone.


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