Senator Poe: Government should maintain good relations with China, should not rely on US

Senator Grace Poe believes the Philippines should not rely on United States and should pursue the West Philippine Sea arbitration case but should also maintain good relations with China in aspects like trade, reports GMA News Online.

“I’m sorry to say, Mr. Ambassador [Goldberg ], but I know the US, our ally,” the lady senator said. “We can’t fault them for thinking of their own interests. In pursuing any conflict, the first interest we need to think of are our constituents.”

US Ambassador to Philippines Philip Goldberg was present at the awarding event, June 11, hosted by Rotary Club of Manila where Senator Poe was the guest of honor.

“Can we rely on the United States to defend us? I don’t think we should do that. And I don’t think the US would be in the position to do that because they have to be able to weigh in also on what their citizens want or what to do for their country,” Poe said.

The Philippine government has filed a case before the Permanent Court of Arbitration against China’s U-shaped nine-dashed line map claiming virtually the entire South China Sea including West Philippine Sea.

“Sometimes when we focus on one aspect, we forget the strength of the other relationships we will have,” Poe added.