By Jennylou Canon


As Chinese vessels remain in Julian Felipe Reef, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that talks with China regarding the dispute are being done privately by President Rodrigo Duterte.

Roque said that diplomatic initiatives do not have to be done publicly as it is an exception to freedom of information.

“Ang larangan ng diplomasya, isang exception to freedom of information,” Roque said.

“Kung ano man ang ginagawa ng Presidente, hayaan nating gawin niya iyon sa isang pribadong pamamaraan dahil hindi naman po dapat inaanunsyo sa publiko ang mga diplomatic initiatives o hakbang na ginagawa ng Pangulo,” he added.

Earlier, Duterte has expressed desire to resolve the rift over China's presence at Julian Felipe Reef in West Philippine Sea through peaceful means.

Meanwhile, as the country continues to file daily diplomatic protests, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) called on Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian regarding the prolonged stay of Chinese vessels within the country's exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

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