Marcos admin ‘lacks strategy’ in Ayungin Shoal—Roque

Marcos admin ‘lacks strategy’ in Ayungin Shoal—Roque

/ 09:49 PM April 02, 2024

BRP Sierra Madre

FLASHPOINT Resupply missions to the BRP Sierra Madre, a rusting World War II warship grounded in Ayungin Shoal, continue to be a point of conflict between Manila and Beijing. REUTERS

MANILA, Philippines — Former presidential spokesman Harry Roque claimed on Tuesday that President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.’s administration lacks strategy in conducting resupply missions to the grounded BRP Sierra Madre in Ayungin Shoal.

Roque, in a televised interview, said judging from history, China “will not allow further delivery” of construction materials to BRP Sierra Madre.


READ: Roque: PH may lose Ayungin if it continues to impose hardline stance


“But you know, there’s such a thing as diskarte (strategy). I do not believe that we did not deliver construction or repair materials, but it can be done in a manner that would not provoke the Chinese in a manner that they are being provoked now,” said Roque over ANC’s Headstart.

This prompted him to emphasize that what’s lacking with the Marcos administration is a clear strategy.

Provoke China?

“Diskarte (strategy). That’s what is probably lacking now, which leads me to my next point — are we really wanting to provoke China to respond in a way that we know she will because we want the United States to come to our rescue under the Mutual Defense Treaty?,” he emphasized.

In the same interview, Roque admitted that he’s a bit worried because it seems like Marcos does not have a “clear policy” on China.

His remarks came after he was asked what his comment was on Marcos’ recent directive to form a body beefing up the country’s maritime security following the recent escalation of aggressive action by China against Philippine vessels in the West Philippine Sea.

READ: Marcos forms body to beef up West Philippine Sea security


Why is it only now?

“Why is it only now that he is forming this office if he had a very clear idea of how we should proceed with Philippine-China bilateral relations?” Roque asked.

For his part, Roque believes it would just be better to “listen” to the country’s ambassador in China because he supposedly “knows how the Chinese thinks, he knows who to talk to, and he knows better than anyone else how to resolve our dispute with China.”

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Earlier, the former presidential spokesman warned that the Philippines may lose Ayungin Shoal should it continue with its “hardline” stance.

TAGS: Ayungin Shoal, Bongbong Marcos Jr., China, China aggression, Harry Roque

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