Duterte might Hurt China's Feelings,assures Xi & Pushed Stronger Ties w/ China

Updated: Jun 12, 2020

The Philippine leader also supposedly promised to be China's ally against those who oppose it.

"The Philippine side will always be a friend of the Chinese people and will not allow anyone to use the Philippines to engage in anti-China activities, said Duterte," said Xinhua.

Main Articles:

Let’s not hurt China’s feelings’: Why Duterte hasn’t visited Pag-asa Island- rappler.com

Duterte won't attend Independence Day celebration in Luneta - manila-shimbun.com

Duterte assures Xi of PH’s commitment to maintain ties with China amid challenges


Duterte extols ‘special ties’ with China - globalnation.inquirer.net

Duterte promised to be China's ally and will not allow anyone to use the Philippines to engage in anti-China activities - rappler.com

Related Articles:

Experts warn of China-backed candidates in 2022 PH elections - philstar.com

Carpio on 2022 elections: Elect leaders who will stand up to China - newsinfo.inquirer.net

How Philippines President Duterte is playing into the hands of Xi's China - www.wionews.com

Palace says PH-China ties enjoying ‘renaissance’ under Duterte - globalnation.inquirer.net

Let’s not hurt China’s feelings’: Why Duterte hasn’t visited Pag-asa Island

Photo Source: https://www.chiangraitimes.com/thailand-national-news/philippines-duterte-copies-chinas-xi-jinping-playbook-jailing-critics/

Who can forget President Rodrigo Duterte’s quip about taking a jet ski to the West Philippine Sea and plant the national flag on the Spratlys?

Pag-asa Island is the largest among the 9 features that comprise the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG), the Philippine-controlled islets among the broader Spratly Group also contested by Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, Taiwan, and China.

Pag-asa, or Thitu, Island is the 2nd largest island in the Spratlys, after the Taiwanese-held Itu-Aba.

On Tuesday, June 9, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and the military top brass visited Pag-asa to unveil the new beaching ramp that took two-and-a-half years to complete.

The structure allows vessels to directly offload passengers and cargo onto the island. It will make further construction projects easier, and more frequent official visits feasible.

All this, in an effort to beef up Filipino presence in the West Philippine Sea, where other claimants, especially China, have built far more formidable outposts.

Reporters covering the inauguration asked Lorenzana: Would President Duterte finally visit Pag-asa Island?

After all, Duterte more than once said he would visit the island. The first was in April 2017, during a speech at Camp Artemio Ricarte in Puerto Princesa, Palawan. He said he would go to Pag-asa on Independence Day and there hoist the Philippine flag.

He took it back a week later, saying China asked him not to do so.

In May 2018, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte was planning to visit Pag-asa “within his term.”

A presidential visit to the West Philippine Sea would be highly symbolic, and would send a strong message to China and other claimants that the Philippines is serious about defending its sovereignty.

For example, Indonesian President Joko Widodo has visited the Natuna Islands, a flashpoint of his country’s tensions with China, 4 times.

So is Duterte going or not?

Hindi natin alam (We don’t know),” Lorenzana answered the reporters with him on Pag-asa Island.

“But one time, he announced that he will come here, when we were there in Palawan. But when he went to China, he retracted it,” the defense chief added in a mix of English and Filipino.

“Tapos sabi niya he doesn’t want to, alam mo naman, sabi nya ‘yung mga Chinese ay ‘wag natin – Mga kaibigan natin. I don’t want to hurt their feelings,” Lorenzana said, recounting his exchange with the President.

(Then he said he doesn’t want to, you know, he said the Chinese, let’s not – They’re our friends. I don’t want to hurt their feelings.)

Lorenzana, who has visited Pag-asa at least twice, also got a call from the Chinese when he was planning his first voyage in April 2017.

“Kinausap ako ni Ambassador Zhao [Jianhua], kung puwede hindi ako pumunta rito. Tinanong ko sa kanya, bakit? Sabi niya, wala pang nagpupunta diyan na Secretary of Defense,” he recalled his exchange with the former Chinese envoy to the Philippines.

(Ambassador Zhao Jianhua talked to me, asking that I don’t come here. I asked him, why? He said, no Secretary of Defense has gone there before.)

Zhao even used the word “please,” Lorenzana said.

So what did the former Philippine Army general answer Zhao?

Eh ‘di ako mauuna (Then I’ll be the first),” Lorenzana told Zhao.

Lorenzana first visited Pag-asa in April 2017, where he announced plans to build the beaching ramp and concretize the island’s unpaved airstrip, which would make scheduling flights there easier.

As for his commander-in-chief, Lorenzana hopes Duterte can still come for a visit within the remaining two years of his presidency.

“So I don’t know if before he leaves, he can come here. Kahit na (Even if) just once only,” Lorenzana said.

Source: https://www.rappler.com/newsbreak/inside-track/263405-why-duterte-has-not-visited-pagasa-island?utm_medium=Social&utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_source=Facebook&fbclid=IwAR2JJqkITx5w1w2n3wdY7QAym5rpFUuUB0Bf9Cbu0iGL2uXeHm8u9iwmKP8#Echobox=1591783817

Duterte promised to be China's ally and will not allow anyone to use the Philippines to engage in anti-China activities

Photo Source: https://globalnation.inquirer.net/166967/duterte-reveals-china-wont-allow-ouster

The Philippine leader also supposedly promised to be China's ally against those who oppose it.

"The Philippine side will always be a friend of the Chinese people and will not allow anyone to use the Philippines to engage in anti-China activities, said Duterte," said Xinhua.

Source: https://www.rappler.com/nation/263629-xi-jinping-tells-duterte-philippines-priority-recipients-chinese-coronavirus-vaccine?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=nation&fbclid=IwAR20sIX3GYBo7e52iI9krJ9rapz3hSNfe6JOEX6I-RMAq4WF5l66IWA0XhU

Duterte won't attend Independence Day celebration in Luneta

Photo Source: https://cnnphilippines.com/news/2020/1/29/duterte-on-china-travel-ban.html

President Rodrigo Duterte would not attend the Independence Day celebration on Friday in Luneta, Malacañang said on Thursday.

In a virtual press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte, who is still in Davao City, would be represented by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea in the flag-raising and wreath-laying ceremonies at Rizal Park in Manila.

Source: http://www.manila-shimbun.com/category/english/news251855.html

Experts warn of China-backed candidates in 2022 PH elections

Photo Source: https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2020/06/11/2020189/china-backed-presidential-bet-possible-2022-experts

Experts warned that China might interfere in the 2022 national elections by supporting a presidential candidate.

Retired Rear. Adm. Rommel Jude Ong, former vice commander of the Philippine Navy, said the forthcoming elections may end up becoming a contest with China.

"If we want to counter China's sharp power, then we should prepare for the national elections in 2022. If we deny our share of responsibility as citizens in reserving our way of life, then we might face an electoral contest not among political parties but against China's preferred candidates," Ong said in a virtual discussion organized by Stratbase ADRi on Tuesday.

In the same virtual discussion, former Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Laura del Rosario noted that China has "contempt for weak nations" so the Philippines would have to stand up to Beijing.

"There will be more than two Manchurian candidates so whoever they field, we have to unite under one candidate," Del Rosario said.

Retired Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said these fears are valid as China now has an "army of trolls" in Philippine cyberspace.

China's online trolls making comments on the country's online news sites would influence the decision of Filipino voters, he added.

"They can also contribute funds to candidates of their choice so this threat of China interfering our 2022 elections is very real," Carpio said in an interview with ANC's "Headstart" Thursday morning.

'Bring up West Philippine Sea during elections'

To counter China's possible interference with the 2022 elections, Carpio said the West Philippine Sea issue should be brought up.

China's nine-dash line claim over the South China Sea overlaps with the Philippines' 200-nautical mile exclusive economic zone in the West Philippine Sea.

While the Philippines won an arbitral award in July 2016 invalidating Beijing's nine-dash line claim, the Duterte administration set aside the landmark ruling to seek loans and investments with China.

"We must make sure that the new president will defend faithfully, sincerely our sovereign rights in the West Philippine Sea," Carpio said.

"We cannot take the chance of a candidate promising to jet ski to Scarborough Shoal and after he gets elected he will say 'I was just joking,'" he added.

During one of the presidential debates in 2016, Duterte promised to ride a jet ski to a disputed island occupied by Cina in the West Philippine Sea and plant the Philippine flag to assert the country's claims.

The president later on said his campaign promise was not serious.

"When I said I would go to China on a jet ski, that's nonsense. I don't even have… It's just talk. I'm surprised you believed it," Duterte said in March 2018.

Source: https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2020/06/11/2020189/china-backed-presidential-bet-possible-2022-experts

Carpio on 2022 elections: Elect leaders who will stand up to China

Photo Source: https://news.mb.com.ph/2019/11/29/i-still-trust-china-duterte/

Filipino voters in 2022 must elect leaders who will “assert and preserve” the country’s rights in the West Philippine Sea, former Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said on Monday (June 8).

“We have to make this an election issue in 2022,” the retired justice said at an online forum.

The country’s next batch of leaders should assert the arbitral ruling that declared China’s claim to nearly the entire South China Sea as invalid and support the Filipino fishermen’s rights in Scarborough Shoal, he said.

President Rodrigo Duterte has been criticized for setting aside the landmark 2016 arbitral ruling against Beijing’s mythical nine-dash line claim in the South China Sea.

China refused to recognize the ruling, continuing its aggression in the disputed waters and building artificial islands to house military facilities.

Duterte avoided directly confronting Beijing over the maritime dispute in exchange for investments and loans.

Carpio said the current administration simply “does not want to displease China.”

“Malaysia government and Vietnamese government are now willing to sign an agreement with the Philippine government that in the Spratlys, there are no geologic features that generate an EEZ, all territorial seas,” he said.

“That would be in consonance with the ruling if we sign that agreement. We will fortify the ruling by signing that. But our own government does not want to sign that because that will displease China,” Carpio said.

It was also important to have a government that fights for sovereign rights in the West Philippine Sea because the United Nations Convention for the Law of the Sea (Unclos) pays attention only to governments, Carpio said.

“Our fishermen can talk to our government and other people of the world. Only governments are heard before the Unclos,” he said.

“That is the limitation that we are facing,” Carpio said.

The Philippines, he said, has also yet to file for an extended continental shelf claim in a part of Luzon facing the South China Sea.

The government, however, does not want to provoke China, he said.

“We should vote for a government that will preserve our rights in the West Philippine Sea,” Carpio said.

Source: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1288244/carpio-on-2022-elections-elect-leaders-who-will-stand-up-to-china

Duterte assures Xi of PH’s commitment to maintain ties with China amid challenges

Photo Source: https://www.gmanetwork.com/news/news/nation/649403/duterte-i-love-xi-jinping-need-china-more-than-anybody-else/story/

President Rodrigo Duterte has assured China which he referred to as a “close neighbor and a valued friend” of the Philippines’ commitment to preserving close ties as the two nations marked its 45th year of diplomatic relations.

In a letter to Chinese President Xi Jinping dated June 9, Duterte noted further strengthening the two countries’ partnership amid challenges the world is facing, including the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

The President also marked the “milestone” as a time to reaffirm “shared aspirations and the principles” committed with the signing of the two countries’ Joint Communiqué signed

Source: https://globalnation.inquirer.net/188313/duterte-assures-xi-of-phs-commitment-to-maintain-ties-with-china-amid-challenges

Duterte extols ‘special ties’ with China

Photo Source: https://news.abs-cbn.com/news/05/15/18/duterte-china-wont-let-me-get-ousted

President Rodrigo Duterte sought stronger ties with China on the 45th anniversary of the two countries’ diplomatic relations on Tuesday and said that threats like the COVID-19 pandemic could push the partnership to “take on even greater significance.”

In a letter to Chinese President Xi Jinping, a copy of which the Chinese Embassy in Manila posted on its Twitter account, Duterte said: “As the entire world continues to face challenges to security and stability and the rule of law, and with the rise of nontraditional and emerging threats such as the COVID-19 pandemic, further strengthening Philippines-China partnership takes on even greater significance.”

Valued friend’

Mr. Duterte described China as a “valued friend” and assured Xi of his “firm commitment to preserve and build on the gains of our close partnership for greater peace, progress, and prosperity for our nations.”

The President has established close ties with Beijing since coming into power in 2016 and has been accused of being soft on China when it comes to conflicting claims over the South China Sea.

China has conducted reclamation activities and continues to put up military facilities in the West Philippine Sea, the portion of the South China Sea being claimed by the Philippines.

Source: https://globalnation.inquirer.net/188362/duterte-extols-special-ties-with-china?fbclid=IwAR2XoGRLZxI48psr4qM8JkqObsRfEZ9JDqpviPc9xMCutBpbvwPsCyGVhR8

How Philippines President Duterte is playing into the hands of Xi's China

Source: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-southchinasea-philippines-china/duterte-says-chinas-xi-threatened-war-if-philippines-drills-for-oil-idUSKCN18F1DJ

Chinese president Xi Jinping is now ready to take the diplomatic ties with Philipines to next level but what's in it for China?

In February, Philipino President Duterte said he won't allow American troops to operate on his soil and scrapped a two-decade-old agreement. China surely likes such a friend. America's exit would mean china's entry, or so it is hoped. But America is also the main defence ally of the Philippines. Provider of military hardware and training. Duterte's generals do not want to lose that, not when China is trying to capture the south china sea.

Over the past three months, China has pointed a laser gun at a Philippine warship. A Chinese vessel even rammed into a philippine boat, causing it to sink in the disputed waters. China has turned seven reefs claimed by the Philippines into artificial islands and militarised them.

Despite all of this, Duterte has made it clear that Beijing is a preferred economic partner. He learnt no lessons from his China-sceptic predecessor Benigno Aquino.

Also read: Why a terminated agreement with the US could push the Philippines closer to China

Aquino famously took China to international court over south china sea disputes. Without realising it, Duterte is now caught between China and the US. Now, there are plans to fix an airstrip on an island in the south china sea.

That may draw Beijing's fury. He is desperate to show that his pro-china stance will pay-off. For this, he has drawn the fury of the philippine public. In 2018, during Xi Jinping's visit to the Philippines, Duterte's citizens made it clear they do not want Chinese interference, and that they do not want Chinese money.

There is near-absence of any Chinese infrastructure investments. Only increased militarisation of the south china sea. So Duterte got cold-feet and took a u-turn and went back to tell the US that he won't scrap the visiting forces agreement. So, US troops will remain in the Philippines. By doing this,

Duterte has put the Philippines in the middle of the US-China political stalemate. The renewed push from China has come at a time when it lacks allies in the region. It is easy for China to bring Duterte to the table. There are many similarities between the leaders too.

Duterte wants the law to suit his needs While Xi is the law in China. For now, the Philippines has the US by its side. Another mistake and, Manila will have to deal with Beijing all by itself.

Duterte is slowly, but surely playing into the hands of Xi's China. 

Source: https://www.wionews.com/world/how-philippines-president-duterte-is-playing-into-the-hands-of-xis-china-304890

Palace says PH-China ties enjoying ‘renaissance’ under Duterte

The Philippine-China ties is “enjoying a renaissance” under the leadership of President Rodrigo Duterte, Malacañang said Tuesday as the two countries mark the 45th year of diplomatic relations.

The Philippines and China have been locked in a maritime dispute over the heavily-contested territories on the West Philippine Sea.

China has been pushing for its expansive claims in the strategic waterway, refusing to recognize the 2016 ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) that invalidated its ambitious nine-dash line feature which owns virtually the entire body of water.

Meanwhile, Duterte has chosen to shelve the PCA ruling in exchange for Chinese economic perks to help fund his administration’s infrastructure projects even as the Asian powerhouse continues its military activities within the Philippine territory.

Source: https://globalnation.inquirer.net/188301/palace-says-ph-china-ties-enjoying-renaissance-under-duterte

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