Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has said that Southeast Asia might need China to secure its waters from pirates and terrorists. On Wednesday January 24th Duterte said that he might call on China to help guard the Sulu and Celebes Seas, an area frequently used by economic terrorists. Duterte was speaking before his flight to India to attend the ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit.
Duterte said that the Sulu and Celebes Seas, in the western and southern part of the Philippines, were lacking in security, allowing pirates and terrorists to pass through freely. He praised China for being instrumental in helping Somalia catch pirates in their seas. “Were it not for the presence of the Chinese, piracy would not have ended there,” said Duterte.
The President repeated his preferred mode of dealing with pirates and terrorists in Southeast Asian waters: blow them up. “I go for a hardline policy. Blow them up in the high seas. Destroy them. Otherwise, if we do not use extreme measures, we will always be at the mercy of criminals,” he said.