China Warns Philippines from Miscalculating South China Sea Situation

Thu Dec 21 2023
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BEIJING: China on Wednesday warned the Philippines from miscalculating the maritime situation of South China Sea, foreign ministry said in a statement.

It said that Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi made the remarks during a telephonic conversation with his Philippine counterpart Enrique Manalo referring to the countries’ tensions in the South China Sea.

He said the maritime situation in the area is tensed because of the presence of ill-intentioned external forces. He went to say that China would always protect its rights and respond resolutely.

The foreign minister Wang Yi said both countries should settle any disputes as neighbors, and the most urgent task in this regard is to manage the current maritime situation in South China Sea.

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Wang added that serious difficulties in bilateral relations are because of Philippines’ changing its policy stance and reneging on its commitments. He advised his Philippine counterpart to return to the right path as early as possible.

The Philippines summoned China’s envoy on December 11 and expressed the possibility to expel him following the tense clashes between the countries’ vessels in South China Sea.

China Dismisses Philippines Accusations

Beijing has defended its actions, stating that it had used “control measures” on ships that had intruded into what it considers its waters. This latest incident follows the Philippines’ recent accusation that China “swarmed” a reef off its coast with over 135 military boats in the South China Sea.

Friction between the Philippines and China has intensified since Ferdinand Marcos Jr. assumed the presidency last year. The Philippines has sought support from allies, conducting joint air and sea patrols with the United States and Australia in recent weeks.

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