Philippine President Benigno Aquino dismissed insults from China after he ‘senselessly’ compared the country’s efforts to claim disputed parts of the South China Sea to Nazi Germany’s demands before WWII.
In an interview with The New York Times published earlier this week, Aquino called for Western leaders not to make the mistake of appeasing China in its attempts to seize control over contested waters in the South China Sea.
“At what point do you say: ‘Enough is enough’? Well, the world has to say it — remember that the Sudetenland was given in an attempt to appease Hitler to prevent World War II,” he told the Times.
State-run Xinhua News fired back at the president, saying that the “senseless” and “ignorant” verbal attack exposed him an “amateurish politician”.
He also joined the ranks of disgraced Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who created great controversy after comparing Japan-China relations to those between the United Kingdom and Germany in the run-up to the First World War last month at the annual World Economic Forum in Switzerland. […]
The Philippine leader conveniently chose to ignore the very fact that it is his government that has adopted a confrontational approach by trying to snatching islands and waters that have long been an unalienable part of Chinese territories since ancient times.
When asked for a response, Aquino said that Xinhua’s defensive rebuttal on the matter proves that the Philippine position is right.
“Well, I thank Xinhua because they are re-affirming the validity of our position. As the saying goes, if someone cannot answer an issue, then he resorts to name-calling,” SCMP quoted Aquino as saying.
“If you are intentionally insulting me, I thank you because it shows the Philippine position is correct.”
China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei in a press briefing on Friday said that Aquino’s comparisons were “inconceivable and unreasonable,” and that China hopes “the Philippine side will correct its mistake”.
Aquino’s spokesman said that the president was merely being a “storyteller” and citing “facts”.
[Image via Xinhua]