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Philippines to push back against China if maritime interests ignored

4/3/2024 18:14
        The Philippines will cooperate with China in talks on the disputed South China Sea, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr said on Monday, but will push back when its sovereignty and maritime rights are ignored.
        
        Speaking at a Lowy Institute forum during a visit to Australia, Marcos said he was committed to working with Southeast Asian nations and China for a long-delayed code of conduct (COC) in the South China Sea anchored on international law.
        
        "These efforts are not pursued in a vacuum. A conducive environment where tensions are effectively managed is crucial to the success of the COC negotiations," Marcos said as he reiterated he will not surrender any Philippine territory to a foreign power.
        
        Ties between neighbours the Philippines and China soured shortly after Marcos took office in 2022, with repeated disputes over atolls and reefs in the South China Sea at a time when Manila has developed closer defence ties with the United States.
        



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