Aquino, Hu meeting to take place in Russia-A A +A
Saturday, September 8, 2012
FOREIGN Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario said on Saturday that the bilateral talks between President Benigno Aquino III and Chinese President Hu Jintao will push through at the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders' Meeting in Vladivostok, Russia.
Del Rosario, however, could not tell yet whether the bilateral talks would take place Saturday or on Sunday before Aquino returns to Manila.
"Yes. The format has been finalized. We're still waiting for a final date and time as to when the meeting will take place," he said in a press conference in Vladivostok when asked if the meeting between Aquino and Hu was finalized.
He said the territorial row between the two nations would surely be discussed in the meeting of the two leaders.
China has been claiming wholly the entire West Philippines Sea or the South China Sea, while the Philippines has been claiming parts of it.
"I think that a reasonable time will be allocated for the meeting," Del Rosario said, adding, "There is no pre-agreed agenda of the meeting."
He reiterated that the relations of the Philippines and China were not only anchored on the West Philippine Sea issue, recalling that in the last meeting of the two leaders during Aquino's visit to China last year, they agreed to move forward the bilateral agenda of the two countries.
"I think that without preempting the discussion between the two presidents, I'd like to ask you to recall that in their last meeting when the President was invited for a state visit to China there was an agreement that the disputes in the South China Sea are not the sum total of the relations," he said.
"And what we'd like to happen is we’d like to go back to that agreement, which essentially states that both leaders will try to move forward the bilateral agenda and abstract the contentious issues and deal with that separately," Del Rosario added. (SDR/Sunnex)