In a strong rebuke to China’s accusations of the Philippines “stirring up trouble” after joint patrols with the United States, Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro Jr. labeled Beijing’s claims as “lies” and a “reversal of truth.”
Speaking at the Department of National Defense anniversary, Teodoro asserted, “Sino ba ang nananakop? (Who is the invader?) It is China. The Philippines is not stirring up trouble; this is the reversal of the truth. It’s an absolute falsity for China to say that.”
Teodoro, addressing the media in Camp Aguinaldo, emphasized the consistency of China’s narrative in distorting the truth, stating, “Our interests are to protect our rights, in accordance with Unclos (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea) and the international law which China purports to respect in words but unfortunately not in deeds.”
He further remarked on China’s credibility, describing it as “very, very low,” challenging the veracity of their commitment to international law. Teodoro’s response follows China’s southern theatre command’s accusation that the Philippines is “stirring up trouble” through joint patrols with the U.S. in the West Philippine Sea.
The comments highlight the ongoing geopolitical tensions in the South China Sea, underlining the complexities of maritime disputes and the Philippines’ resolute stance on safeguarding its sovereignty.
The unique dynamics in the region continue to shape the narratives of nations involved, reflecting the intricate challenges faced in navigating territorial claims and geopolitical rivalries.