Duterte "not satisfied" with Xi's response on arbitral ruling
President Rodrigo Duterte said he told Chinese President Xi Jinping that he was "not satisfied" with his answer regarding the territorial dispute in the South China Sea.
Duterte during his recent trip to China brought up with Xi the 2016 Hague ruling invalidating China's sovereign and historic claim in almost the entire South China Sea and how they would solve the problem peacefully.
According to Duterte, Xi told him that China would "not budge" on its position that it owns almost the entire South China Sea.
"Out of courtesy, I said, 'Well, I will not maybe insist on your answer now. I am not satisfied with your answer but I will not ask for any other answer. I’ll just remain where I am, where I started considering that you are under stress by the incidents here in Hong Kong'," Duterte said in a press conference in Malacañang Wednesday night.
In a press briefing on Thursday, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo reiterated the Philippines' position it would not surrender its claim in the West Philippine Sea, an area in the South China Sea.
"Our claim, as the President said, is final, binding and unappealable. It is a question of enforcing the same. Again, the question will arise, who will enforce it; how do you enforce it. We will have to look for a mechanism how to enforce it," he said. Celerina Monte/DMS