President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte called for stepping up the adoption of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) while addressing the 37th ASEAN Summit via a teleconference on November 12.
President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte (Photo: EPA)
According to the CNN Philippines, Duterte affirmed the Philippine stance is clear and firm. He said "We must solve the disputes peacefully and in accordance with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS),"
He stressed that the Philippines together with ASEAN member states look toward the goal of turning the East Sea into a sea of peace and prosperity for all.
Manila commits to the immediate conclusion of a substantive and effective COC, he said.
During the 37th ASEAN Summit, Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin reaffirmed the settlement of the East Sea issue by peaceful means in accordance with international law.
He also emphasised the role of ASEAN as a strategic factor in the changing geo-political landscape at present, saying that ASEAN could only play its role when all of its member states stand united and work closely together as a bloc./.VNA