Tuesday, September 04, 2012

P-Noy wants 'four eyes' meeting with Chinese president

President Aquino wants a “four eyes” meeting with Chinese President Hu Jintao on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in Vladivostok, Russia this week.

But presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said yesterday there was no firm schedule yet on the meeting and he could not say whether China’s expansion of Mischief Reef structures would be raised.

“Four eyes” means only Aquino and Hu will be present at the meeting.

Sources said Aquino made known his desire for this kind of meeting during an executive briefing in Malacañang last Friday.

Rommel Banlaoi, executive director of think tank Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research, said the latest structures to be spotted in the area were a windmill, solar panels, a concrete platform suitable for use as a helipad and a basketball court.

Earlier, Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Laura del Rosario said China was seeking a bilateral meeting with the Philippines on the sidelines of the APEC summit and that the West Philippine Sea issue was expected to be discussed.

Del Rosario, however, did not give details.

Aside from the Mischief Reef issue, there have also been Chinese vessels at Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal and they have been preventing Philippine authorities from arresting Chinese poachers in the area.

Since China introduced its nine-dash line theory, areas being claimed by Beijing in the West Philippine Sea have expanded.

“We will wait for the DFA (Department of Foreign Affairs) to make the statement (on the meeting),” Lacierda said.

He said it would also be up to the DFA to deal with the issue on Mischief Reef. -The Philippine Star (Septmeber 04, 2012 12:00AM)

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