Duterte admin ‘not guilty of inaction’ in West PH Sea dispute—Palace
The Duterte administration is “not guilty” of inaction in solving the country’s maritime dispute with China in the West Philippine Sea, Malacañang said on Monday.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque made the statement after a survey showed 81 percent of Filipinos rejected the government’s inaction on the country’s sea row with Beijing.
“[H]indi po guilty ang gobyerno ni Presidente Duterte ng inaction, hindi lang po tayo maingay, pero meron po tayong action kaagad kapag ang tingin natin ay may ginagawa ang Tsina na nalalabag ang ating soberenya at mga karapatan ng soberenya,” Roque said in an interview over radio dzRH.
(Duterte’s government is not guilty of inaction; we’re just not clamorous, but we have taken action when we see that China is doing something that violates our sovereignty and our rights.)
He said the government has been silently protesting China’s aggression and military buildups in the West Philippine Sea.
While Duterte has set aside The Hague ruling that invalidate Beijing’s expansive claims in the South China Sea, Roque reiterated that the President would not give up an inch of our national territory.
“Tayo talaga ay hindi papayag na ang ating teritoryo ay angkinin ng ibang estado. At ang Presidente Duterte, iyan naman ang palaging sinasabi niya, hinding-hindi ako mamimigay ng ating teritoryo,” he said.
(We will not let our territories be claimed by other states. President Duterte always says that he will not give away our territories.)
The Palace official defended the President’s soft stance against China in the country’s sea dispute.
“Bagama’t hindi rin siya makikipag-away kung ang resulta ay walang mangyayari sa samahan sa parti ng Tsina at ng Pilipinas,” he said.
(He will not pick a fight if the result is no progress in the relations of China and the Philippines.)
Duterte has repeatedly said that he would not go to war against China, which he said would result to a “massacre.”
“Ang sa kanya po ay iyong mga hindi mareresolba at hindi magkakaroon ng solusyon na kaagad-agad ay isantabi muna natin at kung ano iyong pupuwede nating isulong, iyong larangan ng ekonomiya lalung-lalo na isulong natin,” Roque said.
(For him, the issues that cannot be resolved or given a solution immediately will be set aside for now and those that can be advanced, like economy, will further be advanced.) Kristine Macasiray, INQUIRER.net trainee/je
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