The comments from Teodoro Locsin, known for blunt remarks, follow Manila’s protests over what it calls the “illegal” presence of hundreds of Chinese boats inside the Philippines’ 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
“China, my friend, how polite can I say that? Let me see … O … GET F ** K OUT,” Locsin tweets on her personal account.
“What are you doing to our friendship? You. Not us. We try. You. You’re like an ugly oaf who forces your attention on a handsome guy who wants to be a friend; not the father of a Chinese province.” Said Locsin.
In response to a request for comment, a State Department spokeswoman reiterated a statement from Secretary of State Antony Blinken on March 28, saying the United States “stands with our ally, the Philippines, in the face of (China’s) maritime militia pressure in the South China Sea.”
“As we have said before, an armed attack on the Philippine Armed Forces, public ships or aircraft in the Pacific, including in the South China Sea, will trigger our obligations under the US-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty,” the spokeswoman added.
China claims almost the entire South China Sea, through which passes approx. $ 3 trillion ship trade every year. In 2016, an arbitral tribunal in The Hague ruled that the claim was contrary to international law.
In a statement Monday, the Philippine Foreign Ministry accused China’s coast guard of “shadow, blockade, dangerous maneuvers and radio challenges by Philippine coastguard ships.”
On Sunday, the Philippines promised to continue maritime exercises in its South China Sea EEZ in response to a Chinese demand to stop actions that it said could escalate disputes.
As of April 26, the Philippines had filed 78 diplomatic protests against China since President Rodrigo Duterte took office in 2016, according to data from the State Department.
“Our statement is also stronger because of the more shameless nature of the activities, the number of frequency and proximity of the intrusion,” said Marie Yvette Banzon-Abalos, executive director of strategic communications at the State Department.
Duterte has mostly pursued warmer ties with China in exchange for Beijing’s billions of dollars in investment, aid and loans.
“China remains our benefactor. Just because we have a conflict with China does not mean we have to be rude and disrespectful,” Duterte said in a weekly national speech.
“So please let our fishermen fish in peace and there is no need for trouble,” Duterte said, addressing China.