National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has said that other countries getting involve in West Philippine Sea have different interests compared to Philippines.
“When he said that inutile, I don’t think that – I believe he is not being defeatist. He is just being pragmatic and realistic,” Secretary Lorenzana said in an online press briefing August 3. “There are so many countries who are getting involved here in South China Sea, but they have different interests than the Philippines.”
“Their main concern is freedom of navigation. We support that because it also coincides with our wish that the freedom of navigation continues in the South China Sea,” he added.
“But if we study further, we have other issues in the South China Sea like how are we going to exercise our sovereign rights to exploit the resources in the South China Sea. Mukhang di makikialam ang ibang bansa, it’s only between us and China,” he explained.
“In fact, there have been ongoing talks already about sharing our resources, extraction of the resources,” Lorenzana said. “The President never set aside permanently the arbitral court ruling – Sabi lang niya kay President Xi, before my term ends, I will invoke it so nandiyan pa rin, di makakalimutan diyan.”
“‘Yung China naman, they keep saying that they will not honor the ruling but they will also remind us that they ignore the ruling, ibig sabihin deep within their mind ay nandiyan ‘yung ruling at hindi rin nila puwedeng isantabi ng ganon ganon na lang, kasi binabanggit nila eh… The mere fact that they are mentioning it means that there is some understanding na nandiyan, it exists in favor of the Philippines,” he added.