Philippines rejects China talks not based on sea feud ruling
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines’ top diplomat says he has rejected a Chinese government offer to hold negotiations ‘outside of and in disregard’ of an international tribunal’s ruling last week that debunked Beijing’s claim to ownership of virtually the entire South China Sea.
Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. said Tuesday he told his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, that China’s condition “was not consistent with our constitution and our national interest,” adding Wang warned that if the Philippines insists on China’s compliance to the decision, “we might be headed for a confrontation,” Yasay told ABS-CBN network in an interview after he talked with Wang on the sidelines of last weekend’s Asia-Europe meeting in Mongolia.
Despite the seeming impasse, Yasay said he was still hopeful both countries can find a way to resolve the dispute.
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