BEIJING -China on Tuesday (April 4) urged the Philippines to observe the “basic label” and avoid megaphone diplomats following an explosive Twitter message from the South East Asian Foreign Minister demanding that Chinese ships abandon controversial waters.
Mr Teodoro Locsin’s remarks, knew for some blunt remarks, have been followed up by the protests by Manila over what he calls the illegal presence, within the Philippines, of hundreds of Chinese boats (EEZ).China’s foreign ministry issued a statement urging the Philippines to respect the country’s sovereignty and authority and refrain from acts that aggravate the situation.
“Facts have repeatedly proved that microphone diplomacy cannot change the facts, but can only undermine mutual trust,”it said.
“It is hoped that relevant people in the Philippines will comply with basic etiquette and their position when making remarks.”
According to the ministry, President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines said that disagreements between the countries on individual issues should not affect friendship and cooperation.
“China has always worked, and will continue to work with the Philippines, to properly resolve differences and advance cooperation through friendly consultations.”
China is claiming nearly the whole of the South China Sea, which every year receives approximately $3 trillion in ship-borne trade. The Hague Arbitration Court ruled in 2016 that its claim was incompatible with international law.
“I won’t plead the last provocation as an excuse for losing it; but if Wang Yi is following Twitter then I’m sorry for hurting his feelings but his alone,” Mr Locsin said on Twitter on Tuesday, referring to the Chinese government’s top diplomat.
Mr Duterte reminded his officers that in diplomacy there is no room to curse.
“Only the President can cuss,” his spokesman, Harry Roque, told a regular news conference.