“Duterte” admitted that Philippines is powerless against China if the war broke out in the China Sea.
The first remarks from Philippine President “Rodrigo Duterte” said that he was prepared to send his military ships to the South China Sea after hundreds of Chinese vessels were spotted at disputed water. He also emphasized that they are powerless in the war against China.
Last month, after hundreds of Chinese vessels were detected near the Spratly Islands, which is the disputed part of the South China Sea, Philippines had been requesting China to retreat their ships from the water area. Meanwhile, China has refused those repeated demands by Philippines and claimed that they are only fishing boats that were taking refuge from bad weather and were not moored there to instigate the war or survey, as concerned by Philippines.
Since the Philippine leader took power in 2016, his action to build an alliance with China now faced growing criticisms as he is not trying to pressure China to comply with an arbitration ruling in 2016 from the Permanent Court of Arbitration which rejected China’s claim of sovereignty over the most of the South China Sea. The criticism is also included his reluctance to confront China over China’s activities in Philippine-claimed waters.
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“I am not so much interested now in fishing. I do not think there is enough fish to quarrel about”, said Duterte last Monday. “But when we start to mine, when we start to get whatever it is in the bowels of the China Sea, our oil, then at that time, I will send my gray ships there to stake a claim,” he said.
“If they start drilling oil there, I will tell China, is that part of our agreement? If that is not part of our agreement, I will also drill oil there,” Duterte said even as he reiterates that he wanted to remain friends with China and willing to share whatever that is.
Duterte has repeatedly said the war with China is futile because Philippines was powerless to stop China, and if Philippines try to assert jurisdiction over this sea, they could risk instigating a war that Philippines could lose.