Philippines president says S. China Sea becoming ‘flashpoint’
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has urged progress on a code of conduct for the contested South China Sea, which, he warned, was becoming a “flashpoint.”
Speaking at an economic forum in Tokyo on Friday, Duterte veered off script with remarks about the resource-rich sea, over most of which China claims sovereignty, despite competing claims from the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei, Taiwan and Vietnam, AFP said.
“I love China… but it behooves upon us to ask, ‘is it right for a country to claim the whole ocean?’” he said. “I am sad and bewildered – not angry, because I cannot do anything,” Duterte said. “I just hope China will come up with this ‘conduct’ soon.”
The president also said that the escalating trade war between Beijing and Washington could only harm the world economy.