Philippines foreign minister tells China to 'get the f*** out' over Chinese ships parked in disputed territory


Julia Yeo | May 03, 2021, 06:48 PM

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The Philippine foreign minister Teodoro Locsin Jr. demanded China's vessels to leave disputed waters in the South China Sea in an expletive-laced tweet on May 3 (Monday).

"China, my friend, how politely can I put it? Let me see... O...GET THE F*** OUT," Locsin, who is known for his blunt remarks, wrote on Twitter.

He questioned: "What are you trying to do to our friendship?"

In addition, he likened China to "an ugly oaf" forcing their attentions "on a handsome guy who wants to be a friend, not to father a Chinese province".

He continued his tirade in another tweet, asking what was "so hard to understand about Duterte's UN declaration that the Arbitral Award made all maritime features (Philippines')".

Philippine foreign affairs department condemns China's "belligerent actions"

Locsin's fiery tweets came shortly after the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) of the Philippines released a statement protesting against the "shadowing, blocking, dangerous manoeuvre, and radio challenges by the Chinese Coast Guard (CCG)".

According to the statement, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) vessels were "conducting legitimate maritime patrols and training exercises" around Bajo de Masinloc on Apr. 24 to Apr. 25.

The DFA also protested against the "incessant, illegal, prolonged, and increasing presence of Chinese fishing vessels and maritime militia vessels in Philippine maritime zones".

The Philippine maritime law enforcement agencies had been monitoring the "continued unauthorised presence and activities" of hundreds of Chinese vessels in the West Philippine Sea, especially around the Pag-asa Islands, Zamora Reef, Panata and Kota Islands, Ayungin Shoal, Quirino Atoll, and Bajo de Masinloc, the statement added.

The ministry further rejected the claim made by a Chinese foreign ministry's spokesperson on Apr. 26, who said that China enjoys sovereignty over Bajo de Masinloc, stressing that it was "without basis in international law".

"China has no law enforcement rights in these areas. The presence of CCG vessels in the Philippines' territorial waters of Pag-asa Islands and Bajo de Masinloc, an exclusive economic zone, raises serious concerns," the DFA warned.

"The unauthorised and lingering presence of these vessels is a blatant infringement on Philippine sovereignty."

The statement called on China to withdraw its vessels around the disputed waters, asking China to "respect Philippine sovereignty".

Philippines in extended territorial dispute with China

According to Reuters, China's embassy in Manila did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The latest post on Facebook by China's embassy in Manila was a post related to Xinjiang.

The Phillipines and China have had a fiery exchange since March when over 200 Chinese vessels were detected in the Whitsun Reef before spreading out to other areas in the disputed South China Sea.

Manila's repeated demands for the ships to leave had been largely ignored by Beijing, which insisted that Whitsun Reef is part of China's territory.

Besides these two countries, Vietnam also lays claim to the Whitsun Reef, which is part of the disputed Spratly Islands.

As of Apr. 26, the Philippines has filed 78 diplomatic protests to China since Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte came to power in 2016, reported Reuters.

Duterte for the most part has pursued warmer ties with China in exchange for Beijing's promises of billions of dollars in investment, aid and loans.

In exchange for economic benefit for the Philippines, the country under Duterte has warmed up to China generally.

However, while Duterte considers China "a good friend", he said last week that "there are things that are not really subject to a compromise", Reuters reported.

Top diplomat Locsin known for colourful speech

Locsin, who holds the position of the Philippines' top diplomat, is not known for his political correctness.

In 2019, the minister called the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president Romulo Valles a "moron in a white Mu-Mu" in a tweet, bashing him for asking people to pray for the country's Vice President Leni Robredo, who was taking on a new role to handle the country's anti-drug problem, according to Inquirer.

While his tweets have been condemned and deplored by several groups, his tweets remain consistently abrasive.

Locsin has been compared to former United States president Donald Trump for his unfiltered tweets, which SCMP described to be "streaked with crudeness, arrogance, condescension, homophobia, profanity and violence".

Top image via Teddy Locsin/Twitter & AFP/Getty Images