April 7, 2017 / 7:40 AM / 2 years ago

China expresses concern over reported Duterte South China Sea comments

BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s Foreign Ministry on Friday said it hoped the Philippines could continue to properly manage maritime disputes with China, after reports the Philippines president had said troops would occupy uninhabited shoals it claims in the disputed South China Sea.

Philippines defense and military officials have subsequently clarified President Rodrigo Duterte’s comments, saying the Philippines will upgrade existing facilities on its inhabited islands and reefs in the South China Sea and not occupy new territories.

Reporting by Christian Shepherd; Writing by Philip Wen; Editing by Michael Perry

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