President Aquino underscores stability as component for prosperity in the region

MANILA, Dec. 18 (PNA) — President Benigno S. Aquino III said the Philippines is not alone in raising concerns over China’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) in the East China Sea, adding that stability is a necessary component for prosperity in the region.

In a media interview on Wednesday, President Aquino said that apart from the United States, other countries, such as South Korea and Japan, also raised concerns over the establishment of China’s ADIZ.

“Well, palagay ko maganda naman na nasabi ng America iyon, very categorical and very clear. Hindi lang naman America… South Korea also, Japan, and other countries,” the President said.

“Everybody wants to have stability in the region and stability is necessary for prosperity. And one would like to think that all countries are after the prosperity of their peoples,” he added.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario and US Secretary of State John Kerry discussed Tuesday the West Philippines Sea and China’s ADIZ, and agreed on the primacy of the rule of law in the region and respect for the freedom of navigation.

During the 40th ASEAN-Japan Commemorative Summit in Tokyo, President Aquino called anew for a peaceful and rules-based approach in resolving territorial disputes in the region.

“The Philippines’ call for the peace and stability in our region is amplified by recent developments in the East China Sea, on the establishment of an air defense identification zone, which raises concerns over international civil aviation, safety and security,” he said.

“We all should view with greater concern recent pronouncements of Chinese officials that China will establish other ADIZs in due course after completing relevant preparations,” he added. (PNA)