Philippine Defense Chief Says Taiwan Strait Situation an 'Internal Matter'

The Philippines' Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro arrives to attend the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) in Jakarta, Indonesia, November 15, 2023. REUTERS/Willy Kurniawan/Pool/ File Photo
The Philippines' Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro arrives to attend the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) in Jakarta, Indonesia, November 15, 2023. REUTERS/Willy Kurniawan/Pool/ File Photo
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Philippine Defense Chief Says Taiwan Strait Situation an 'Internal Matter'

The Philippines' Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro arrives to attend the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) in Jakarta, Indonesia, November 15, 2023. REUTERS/Willy Kurniawan/Pool/ File Photo
The Philippines' Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro arrives to attend the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting (ADMM) in Jakarta, Indonesia, November 15, 2023. REUTERS/Willy Kurniawan/Pool/ File Photo

The situation in the Taiwan Strait, where China has carried out military exercises, is an "internal matter," Philippine Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro said on Friday, declining to comment on drills that Taiwan has condemned.
China's military conducted a second day of war games around Taiwan on Friday, with drills to test its ability to "seize power" and control key areas. Beijing has said the exercises were launched to punish Taiwan's new president, Lai Ching-te, Reuters reported.
"I will not comment on anything on the Taiwan Strait, as that's an internal matter for them," Teodoro told reporters on the sidelines of a Philippine Navy anniversary event.
China views democratically governed Taiwan as its own territory and denounces Lai as a "separatist". It strongly criticized his inauguration speech on Monday, in which he urged Beijing to cease threats and said the two sides of the strait were "not subordinate to each other".
Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr drew China's ire in January when he congratulated Lai after winning an election, referring to him as president.
China in response summoned the Philippine ambassador and warned the country "not to play with fire", calling the message from Marcos gross interference and a serious violation of the "One China" principle.
Marcos later defended his remarks, stressing that his message was "common courtesy" and he did not endorse Taiwan independence. US ally Manila has said it wanted to recognise the Philippines and Taiwan's "mutual interests", including 200,000 Filipino workers on the island.



Russia Launches Missile Attack on Kyiv and Surrounding Region

Firefighters work at a site of a household item shopping mall hit by a Russian air strike, amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, in Kharkiv, Ukraine May 25, 2024. REUTERS/Oleksandr Ratushniak
Firefighters work at a site of a household item shopping mall hit by a Russian air strike, amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, in Kharkiv, Ukraine May 25, 2024. REUTERS/Oleksandr Ratushniak
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Russia Launches Missile Attack on Kyiv and Surrounding Region

Firefighters work at a site of a household item shopping mall hit by a Russian air strike, amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, in Kharkiv, Ukraine May 25, 2024. REUTERS/Oleksandr Ratushniak
Firefighters work at a site of a household item shopping mall hit by a Russian air strike, amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, in Kharkiv, Ukraine May 25, 2024. REUTERS/Oleksandr Ratushniak

Russia launched three missiles overnight on Ukraine, with air defense systems destroying two of the weapons over the Kyiv region, Ukraine's Air Force Commander Mykola Oleshchuk said on Sunday.
In his statement on the Telegram messaging app, Oleshchuk did not say what happened to the third missile.
There were no immediate reports from Ukrainian officials of damage or injuries as a result of the attack.
Kyiv, its surrounding region and several others across Ukraine were under air raid alerts for about an hour on Sunday morning, starting at 4:50 a.m. local time (0150 GMT).
Reuters witnesses reported hearing several blasts in and around Kyiv at the time that sounded like air defense systems hitting air weapons.