Senator Richard J. Gordon on Thursday said the Philippines must stand up and defend its territory.
‘’We must not be bullied by so-called friends,’’ Gordon said as Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. ordered the filing of another protest against China after Beijing called on the Philippines to stop its maritime exercises in the West Philippine Sea (WPS).
Philippine defense officials said it is China that is causing tension for intruding into the WPS which the United Nations Arbitration Court favored the Philippine in the WPS and rejected China’s historical claim.
‘’Our Constitution renounces war as an instrument of national policy and adheres to the policy of peace and amity with all nations,’’ Gordon said.
‘’China should heed the Chinese proverb ‘A good neighbor is a priceless treasure’,’’ he stated
Gordon, chairman of the Senate Blue Ribbon committee, said US President Biden has committed to the security of the Indo-Pacific area to prevent conflicts.
‘’Its time to work with the US, Australia and our ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) neighbors to contain China’s aggression. We must work together and send Beijing the message that we will not be bullied,’’ he added.
Gordon lamented that China calls for respect ‘’but its aggressive actions do not match, do not deserve its call for respect.’’
‘’We should continue and even increase our coastguard patrols and naval monitoring of our territory and exclusive economic zones,’’ he added.