Before flying to Myanmar, President Rodrigo Duterte gave a statement about the alleged plans of China regarding Scarborough Shoal.
The President said, “We cannot stop China from doing his thing, the Americans were not able to stop it. Sir, what will I do? Declare a war against China? I can, but we’ll all lose our military and policemen tomorrow, and we are a destroyed nation.”
It could be remembered that Duterte had refused to raise the landmark ruling last July, believing that bilateral talks will mend the severed relations between the country and China.
“Kung ang China magkuha na sila ng mga oil, o uranium or whatever that’s inside the bowels of the sea, kalabitin ko sila, ‘Ako man rin ang may-ari niyan. You claim it by historical right; by judgment, I won and it’s mine,'” he said in a speech before the Filipino community in Myanmar yesterday.
China had no historical rights to the resource-rich waters. Beijing refuses to recognize the ruling, The Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) said.
“Pumunta ako ng China. I said, ‘I come here in peace. I do not intend to impose the arbitral ruling on the China West Philippine Sea.’ But I would like to tell you now that during my term, there will be a time where I have to confront you about this paper, the arbitral. It will not go beyond the four corners of this document,” Duterte said in Yangon Sunday.