President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. will meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the sidelines of the APEC Summit in San Francisco Thursday afternoon to discuss ways to deescalate tensions in the West Philippine Sea.
"We will get the view of the Chinese President on what we can do to bring down the temperature, to not escalate the situation in the West Philippine Sea," Marcos Jr. said in a video message
"And we will put all of these together so as we’ll be able to strategize for the near future on what the Philippines’ role will be or what is the proper Philippines’ role in the West Philippine Sea," he continued.
Marcos Jr’s meeting with Xi follows his discussion with US Vice President Kamala Harris before the start of the APEC conference on Wednesday, which he said touched on the Philippine assessment on the situation in the West Philippine Sea.
“We just generally chatted about --- she was very interested to know what our assessment was on the situation in the West Philippines Sea, and I just went through the narrative of what was --- what had happened in the past few months,” he said.
“And we tried to discuss some of the ways forward and I think that generally speaking, especially after my meeting with President Xi, which I’m going to have some time today. After that, we will put together the ways forward because we are continuously trying to maintain the peace. And now that’s what I see the mission of the Philippines, the Philippine Coast Guard, the Philippine military, our fishermen, all of us. It is our basic fundamental mission here --- is to maintain the peace.”