President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday slammed the United States after one of its defense officials said the Philippines' plan to acquire submarines and other military equipment from Russian Federation is unhealthy for its alliance with Washington.
But Duterte shot back, "Is that the way you treat an ally?" "And you want us to stay with you for all time?" "Give me a reason why and make it public", Duterte said in a speech in Davao City.
"Who are you to warn us?" The US has been a primary source of military equipment for the Philippines, being a long-standing ally.
U.S. Defense Assistant Secretary for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs Randall Schriver on Thursday told reporters he did not think buying equipment from Russian Federation would be "a helpful thing to the alliance" of the Philippines with the U.S.
According to Schriver, when a country buys weapon systems, "you're not just buying capability, you're investing in a relationship".
"While our acquisition of submarines for the Philippine Navy is still under study and nothing is final at this point, we emphasize that the Defense Department will procure equipment that is most advantageous for the Armed Forces of the Philippines through our AFP Modernization Program", Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said. You state your case why you are against my country acquiring submarines.
"Finding U.S. platforms and U.S. solutions helps us continue our interoperability, helps us improve our ability to operate in all kinds of scenarios", he said.
The Philippines is considering to buy Russia's Kilo-class diesel-electric submarines with a powerful surface displacement of 2,350 tons, length of 73.8 meters and capable speed of 17 to 20 knots.
He also revived his claim that the US Central Intelligence Agency is out to kill him.
"I think they should think very carefully about that", Schriver said as quoted by local media.