Philippines, Malaysia reaffirm vow to maintain peace in South China Sea
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines and Malaysia on Thursday reaffirmed its commitment to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea “without resort to the threat or use of force.”
President Rodrigo Duterte and Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad renewed this commitment during their bilateral meeting in Malacañang.
“We emphasized the importance of maintaining and promoting peace, security, stability, safety and freedom of navigation and overflight over the South China Sea, as well as the peaceful settlement of disputes. This is, without resort to the threat or use of force, in accordance with the universally recognized principles of international law,” Duterte said in a joint statement after their bilateral meeting.
Mahathir said he and Duterte also talked about security matters.
“Malaysia is committed to take the necessary steps to address the serious issue of terrorism and violent extremism through the Trilateral Cooperation Agreement,” he said.
“Under this framework,” he said “Malaysia and the Philippines together with Indonesia have agreed to undertake unilateral maritime and air patrols to tackle the growing security challenges.”
“We also exchanged views on a number of regional and international issues of mutual interests, such as the South China Sea and cooperation within Asean,” he said. /ee
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