President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday has expressed his support for Japan’s position against North Korea and its nuclear threat.
Duterte gave the assurance to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe when they both met during a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the 31st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit in Pasay City.
At the meeting, Duterte, who hosts this year’s ASEAN meetings, assured Abe of his support in Japan’s position as it was a “matter of interest” for both countries.
“I can assure you that in the matter of the interest of your country and mine, we are supporting you against what North Korea is doing,” Duterte told Japanese Minister during their bilateral meeting.
“We have said it several times already in the past that it is not [in] the interest of North Korea to swagger around and threaten the world, of keeping us hostage with the atomic weapons,” the Philippine president added.
Duterte said that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un should realize that he would be responsible if nuclear activities in his country would cause the world’s destruction.
“We condemn his several launching of missiles. It is bad. It puts a strain on everybody, not only in Japan but all over the world,” Duterte said, adding that he would be responsible for ending life in this planet “if his mind goes out of control.”
“That is why we are persuading him, maybe pleading him to stop the aggressive posture because we are not… The Philippines is about too far but, you know, nobody will save us from a holocaust if it happens,” Duterte stressed.
During the bilateral meeting which took place after the ASEAN-Japan Summit, Abe stressed that the nuclear and missile issues in the Korean peninsula were “grave and imminent” trades.
“We need to make North Korea change their policy by enhancing the pressure applied to North Korea to the highest level by all available means, including the full implementation of the Security Council’s resolutions,” Abe said in his opening remarks.
Despite the United Nations’ economic sanctions and extensive condemnation by the foreign community, North Korea has continued to strengthen its nuclear program.
Earlier, North Korea threatened to launch missile strikes toward Guam, where a US military base is situated. This prompted the United States President Donald Trump to declare that he would meet any threat to his country with “fire and fury” that the world has never seen before.
Aside from Guam, Japan, along with South Korea and other East Asian countries, are also preparing for possible missile strikes.