Philippine envoy’s China trip shelved until ‘proper time’


Former Philippine President Fidel Ramos speaks to journalists as he arrives at Hong Kong International Airport, China August 8, 2016. Picture taken August 8, 2016. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu/File Photo

Former Philippine President Fidel Ramos speaks to journalists as he arrives at Hong Kong International Airport, China August 8, 2016. Picture taken August 8, 2016. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu/File Photo

Visit was aimed at mending ties with Beijing over South China Sea row

A visit to China by a Philippine special envoy tasked with rebuilding tattered ties with Beijing has been cancelled, his aides said on Tuesday, the latest turn in a foreign policy increasingly unpredictable under the new president.

Fidel Ramos, Philippine president from 1992-1998, would still go to Beijing, but when the time was right, according to an aide. News of the aborted trip was first posted on the website of the Philippine embassy in Beijing.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte picked Ramos to start a complex process of dialogue with China in the wake of a landmark ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, which invalidated Beijing’s claim to most of the South China Sea and put much of the region on edge.

No official announcement had been made about the trip by either the Philippines or China and it was not clear with whom he had planned to meet. The aide of Ramos, who was not authorised to speak to media, said he still planned to go “at the proper time”.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte speaks during his visit at the Philippine Marines headquarters in Taguig city, south of Manila on Tuesday. Photo: EPA

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte speaks during his visit at the Philippine Marines headquarters in Taguig city, south of Manila on Tuesday. Photo: EPA

China refuses to recognise the arbitration case, but both sides have pledged to pursue warmer ties. China claims most of the South China Sea, through which more than US$5 trillion of trade moves annually. Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam have rival claims.

China’s foreign ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

But a source with direct knowledge of the matter said the reason for cancelling the trip was because it clashed with Duterte’s schedule. He is due to visit Vietnam starting on Wednesday. “The president’s visit to a number of Asian countries is being arranged,” the source added.

Duterte in a speech yesterday reiterated his hopes of making China a new friend, along with Russia, and said by next year he would have “entered into so many new alliances”.

His rhetorical outreach towards Russia and China was accompanied for a second day by a chiding of the United States, which he would not allow to “impose on us anything”.

China too was not spared criticism, with Duterte telling Beijing to control drug gangs supplying narcotics to the Philippines. “If you consider us your friend and want to help us, most of the materials are from China, what does that mean?” he said.

Lauro Baja, a retired former deputy foreign minister and Philippines ambassador to the United Nations, said Duterte should send a clearer message on his foreign policy intentions, and not through the media. “The view from the outside is that the Philippines’ worst enemy is itself, its foreign policy is confusing,” he said.“So, both Washington and Beijing would ask, what does the Philippines want?”

Source: SCMP’s “Philippine envoy’s China trip shelved until ‘proper time’”

Note: This is SCMP’s report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.

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4 Comments on “Philippine envoy’s China trip shelved until ‘proper time’”

  1. Fu Man-Chu says:

    THE EMPIRE BEGINS TO STRIKE BACK?

    Looks like Obama and gang has started to put pressure, or should I say threaten or blackmail the Duterte Administration on the kind of damage the U.S. can wreak on the Philippines if the Duterte Administration do not listen and do what they say. They may even have politically sensitive information on Duterte himself, and his innner circle team members.

    Meantime, the U.S. ambassador has been asked to report back to Washington to recommend an ambitious, unscrupulous opportunist psychopathic career politician that the Black House can cultivate and “help” him win the next election; maybe even earlier. Someone who will turn out exactly like far right militant Abe “grandson of a war criminal” Abe, and equally rightist and loyal American dog, Lee Myung-Bak.

    Watch the developments dear audience. Watch for the coming “coincidental” or “chance” incidents occuring that is to the advantage of the U.S. in their quest to maintain their Empire and diminishing Russia and China at the same time. Expect the CIA and the Pentagon to be covertly behind many such chance, coincidental occurrences.

    Like the false flag sinking of the Korean frigate – the Cheonan – and then using the American controlled mainstream media bullhorn to brainwash everyone into believing it was the North Koreans who did it. As correctly said, the American government has no scruples to kill and murder their vassal state’s citizens as sacrifice for their Empire’s agenda.

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    • Anon says:

      It has already started. The false flag bomb going off in the Davao market killing 20 people was the first warning. Just like the many false flag bombings and shootings in France blamed on the Islamic terrorists, these terrorist incidents by the CIA were meant to teach “disobedient” Francos Hollande and earlier, Mr Sarkozy, for jilting Obama and getting closer to Mr Putin.

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      • Joseph says:

        That Davao bombing bears an eerie similarity to the bombing in Jakarta early this year. A bomb exploded near embassies and the West quickly demanded ‘unrestricted security access’ to Indonesia in the pretext of ‘fighting terrorism’. But people quickly suspected that it wasn’t terrorism, but a foreign covert operation from the likes of CIA and MI5, a very clumsy one. The Indonesian government was offended that they ‘couldn’t’ handle terrorism, given the Indonesian police responded and killed the terrorists much faster than the French. In the end the matter lost popularity over a bizzare lesbian murder case by an Australian-resident Indonesian, in which the Indonesian police demanded Western cooperation more than the ‘terrorism’ case.
        After all this year of peace and quiet from Abu Sayaf, a bomb exploded, and similarly, British MI5 quickly declared Philippines Abu Sayaf as ‘dangerous’ and ‘part of ISIS’, then they demand Western access to Phillipines in the name of ‘fighting terrorism’. When Indonesian freighter crews were kidnapped for ransom by Abu Sayaf just last months, the West ruled it as piracy and not terrorism. Now that the Abu Sayaf cooperated to release the hostages, out of the blue they are suddenly dangerous terrorist to the West. What changes? Just until a few month ago, they had access to Philippines under Aquino. Now they have to do use Abu Sayaf as excuse to go into Philippines. What happen with the excuse of ‘defending Philippines’ from China on the SCS’? It does not work anymore under Duterte. Considering how Duterte behaves so far, he should be offended that he ‘can’t’ handle terrorism.

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  2. Joseph says:

    Wow. This is what the West needs. A pause in the bid to get closer to China. Even better if the Philippines president that they now call the ‘foul-mouthed’ Duterte will go back to their embrace, in life (unlikely) and in death (for sure). Or is it just a pipe dream? It is irony that the foul-mouthed Westerners do not actually like to be foul-mouthed. Foul-mouths is a great Western heritage after all.

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