President Rodrigo Duterte said he will be raising the West Philippine Sea arbitration ruling, handed down by the Tribunal at the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, with the Chinese government before his term ends in 2022.
“Sinabi ko in a bilateral meeting the first time I went there (China), sinabi ko na diretso – wala akong ginawa – in front of my Cabinet members, full Cabinet members, nag bilateral [with China] kami harap-harapan – andiyan sila Año, Chief of Staff, sila Lorenzana, Esperon, National Security Adviser,” Duterte said during an event in Davao City on May 4.
“Sinabi ko na: I will go there to dig my oil. ‘Yan ang ginamit ko, dig,” President Duterte said.
He said Chinese President Xi Jinping replied, “you know, we are soft-spoken men. We just found our new friendship. Let us not spoil it – so do not go there – there might be trouble.”
“Kaya sabi ko, not at this time. But remember, before my term ends, I will have to demand to talk about this arbitration,” Duterte noted.
“I cannot let my administration pass without really insisting because I am doing it for my country. I am not doing it for myself. So ‘yan,” he said.