World

Duterte not worried by China's island-building

MANILA : Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said the failure of the United States to thwart China's island-building in the South China Sea showed there was no serious concern about its militarisation or reclamation work.

He reiterated that he wanted to avoid confrontation with China and saw no need or urgency in pressing China to abide by a July ruling by an international tribunal on its South China Sea claims that went in favour of the Philippines.

Asked by CNN Philippines when he would address the issue, Mr Duterte said it would happen "during my time", but he was not yet ready to discuss the ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, and neither was China.

He said he had no intention of pursuing the Philippines' maritime claim and taking on China and that the only power capable of doing so was the US. 
- REUTERS

PhilippinespresidentSouth China Sea