Foreign Secretary Teodoro “Teddy” Locsin Jr. on Tuesday clarified that his apology is solely directed to China’s State Counselor Foreign Minister Wang Yi, whom he consider his “friend.”
Locsin previously issued an expletive-laced message to China wherein he demanded for its vessels to leave the West Philippine Sea.
“China, my friend, how politely can I put it? Let me see… O…GET THE F*** OUT,” he said.
“What are you doing to our friendship? You. Not us. We’re trying. You. You’re like an ugly oaf forcing your attentions on a handsome guy who wants to be a friend; not to father a Chinese province,” he added.
In a tweet on Tuesday, the country’s top diplomat issued an apology for his harsh words. However, he specified it was only for the Chinese diplomat.
“I won’t plead the last provocation as an excuse for losing it; but if Wang Yi is following Twitter then I’m sorry for hurting his feelings but his alone,” Locsin said.
He further noted that the Wang’s “opinion alone matters.”
“It’s been my elusive dream to copy until I attain in mind and manner the elegance of Wang Yi. His opinion alone matters. He mentored me in my Myanmar understanding and response. I went to China to get his advice before the ASEAN leader’s summit and followed it to the letter,” Locsin said.
He also responded to a report saying he supposedly apologized to the Chinese government.
“To my friend Wang Yi only. Nobody else,” Locsin wrote.
Locsin also corrected presidential spokesperson Harry Roque who claimed in a briefing that the former had already apologized to the Chinese ambassador.
Roque claimed he had already discussed the matter with the foreign secretary.
“Kami po ay nagkausap ni Secretary Locsin, at pinaalam po niya sa akin na personal siyang nag-apologize po sa Chinese ambassador at ang mga nabanggit naman po niyang salita ay dahil lang sa mga bagay-bagay na naging dahilan para uminit ang kaniyang ulo,” he said.
Losin then responded to a report detailing the Palace spokesman’s claim.
“Hindi sa Chinese ambassador. Trabaho niya ay tumanggap ng reklamo o insulto,” the DFA chief said.
He also reiterated that the apology was only addressed to Wang.
“Kay State Counselor Foreign Minister Wang Yi, ang pinaka matalino at personableng diplomat sa buong mundo. Harry understands my hair-trigger temper under repeated provocation,” Locsin said.
In the same briefing, Roque also added that only President Rodrigo Duterte has the authority to use expletives in national addresses.
“So inuulit po natin, ang mensahe ng Presidente sa larangan ng diplomasya: Wala pong lugar ang pagmumura. At ang sabi po ng mensahe ng Presidente sa lahat ng miyembro ng kaniyang Gabinete, ang Presidente lang ang pupuwedeng magmura, wala pong pupuwedeng gumaya sa kaniya,” the presidential spokesperson said.
In a statement on May 4, in response to Locsin’s tweets, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin insisted that the Bajo de Masinloc (Huangyan Island) is under China’s jurisdiction.
“The Huangyan Island is China’s territory and its adjacent waters are under China’s jurisdiction. China urges the Philippines’ side to earnestly respect China’s sovereignty and jurisdiction, and stop taking actions that may complicate the situation,” the spokesperson said.