Kremlin Comments on Duterte’s Remarks

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Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was asked to comment on the statements by Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte on the possibility of a military alliance with Russia and China.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — There will be no secret union between Russia, China and the Philippines, Moscow does not form secret alliances, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Wednesday.

“Russia does not build any secret alliances, it consistently develops relations with other states on a mutually beneficial basis and on the basis of mutual respect,” Peskov told journalists when asked to comment on whether the meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Duterte was a step toward creating a secret union.

The spokesman pointed out that the meeting sought to develop bilateral relations between Russia and the Philippines.

“No, this is a step toward the development of bilateral relations,” he said.Philippines’ President Rodrigo Duterte arrived in Moscow on Monday. On Tuesday, he met Russian President Vladimir Putin. Duterte said that he arrived in Moscow to offer Russia friendship and partnership. He also stressed that Philippines needs modern weaponry to fight Daesh terrorist group and expressed hope that Moscow would assist his country in arms procurement.

On Monday, Duterte said that that the Philippines would be open to new military alliances, including with Beijing and Moscow, if international security deteriorated.

Earlier, the Philippines’ leader said that the country “would be the first to join” if China and Russia “will decide to create a new order.” He also said that Manila intends to cooperate with Moscow and Beijing rather than with Washington, amid a rift in relations with the United States.

Such Duterte’s statements have provoked suggestions that Manila is preparing a dramatic change in its foreign policy, including turning away from one of its main allies, the US.