|Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte|
By Patricia Lourdes Viray
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte's public pronouncements on the Philippines' decades-old Mutual Defense Treaty with the United States undermines the country's deterrent capability, an analyst said.
Earlier this week, the president said that he will not invoke the defense treaty with the US if the Philippines confronts China in its violations in the South China Sea, and if the latter chooses the aggressive path.
"I will not call on America. I have lost trust in the Americans," Duterte said, known for his personal stance against the US.
The president made the statement after dismissing the warning of Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Carpio that Chinese are operating on a sandbar near Philippines-controlled Pag-asa Island in the West Philippine Sea—the part of the South China Sea the Philippines claims as under its jurisdiction.
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