By Patricia Lourdes Viray
MANILA, Philippines — Beijing welcomed the visit of President Rodrigo Duterte to a Chinese warship docked in Davao City earlier this week.
"The Chinese side welcomes President Duterte's visit to the Chinese naval vessel calling in Davao City. It shows the growing political mutual trust between the two countries," the Chinese Foreign Ministry said.
Two Chinese warships and a support vessel docked at Sasa Wharf in Davao City on Sunday as part of a goodwill cruise to Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states.
Duterte said that the docking of the three Chinese vessels in the country is part of confidence-building and goodwill.
The president also said he is open to joint military exercises with China.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang noted that the bilateral relationship between the Philippines and China saw an overall improvement last year.
China vowed that it would continue to work with the Philippines in strengthening mutual trust and in handling the South China Sea dispute.
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