Blast the terrorists who are committing piracy like hijacking merchant vessels, killing and kidnapping people at sea, this is what President Rodrigo Duterte would tell the leaders of Malaysia and Indonesia.
“If there is one thing that must be immediately solved is really the problem of the Malacca Strait,” Duterte said during the High Level Forum on ASEAN @ 50 conducted at Conrad Manila, Pasay City on October 19.
“The Malacca used to be historically a supply route and a shipping lane that was very good for
everybody. Of late, terrorism has entered the picture and we see a lot of hijackings and killing of
people, and capturing hostages for ransom,” he noted.
He said that this dangerous situation needs a drastic action. “Whenever I try to solve a problem
that’s in my own assessment and evaluation, is serious enough. I tend to deal with my last card,” he added.
“That has been my character and if I get to talk to the leaders, there is one thing that I can just offer, blast them out of the seas to keep our shipping lanes open and safe,” he added.
“They have committed enough piracy there. Enough money collected from ransoms, and needlessly killing people, decapitating them in front of cameras,” he said. “I think that has to stop. I just finished the war in Malaysia. And then perhaps I can refocus the entire Armed Forces to deal with this problem, once and for all.”
In June, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Philippines launched the Trilateral Maritime Patrol which seeks to secure maritime areas of common concern of the three nations from terrorists. Last week, the three nations launched Trilateral Air Patrol to complement the Trilateral Maritime Patrol.