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Duterte: PH not prepared for war with China

/ 01:57 PM April 08, 2016
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Presidential aspirant Davao City mayor Rodrigo Duterte.
INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/RAFFY LERMA

Presidential aspirant Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte said he would not declare  war against China over the resource-rich West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) should he win in the upcoming national elections.

In a press conference in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Duterte said the Philippines does not stand a chance against China, saying that the military is not prepared.

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“We cannot go to war because we cannot win it. I will not waste the lives of Filipino soldiers and policemen,” Duterte said.

But the tough-talking mayor said he is willing to die to protect the country’s sovereignty in the event that a war would break out under his presidency.

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“I will ask the Navy to deliver me to the nearest area tolerable to them and I will ride a jetski and carry a pole and a flag. When I reach the Spratlys I will erect the Philippine flag,” Duterte said.

READ: Duterte willing to be shot at Spratlys to resolve sea row with China

“You want to shoot me with your missile, fine,” he added.

Duterte said China should not insist on its supposed “ownership” of the disputed areas, adding that he would have a “joint exploration” with the Asian powerhouse.

READ: Duterte open to talks with China, joint exploration at disputed sea

“Do not talk about ownership and I will not make a noise. For the six years that I’m president I’ll shut up,” he said.

The Philippines had filed an arbitration case against China before the United Nations tribunal, the verdict of which is expected to be released in July. IDL

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TAGS: China, Rodrigo Duterte, sea dispute, South China Sea, territorial row, West Philippine Sea
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