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The Philippines' internal battle over its China policy

Duterte's pro-Beijing leanings face resistance from various quarters, including the military

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Over the past few months, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has portrayed China as his prime strategic partner. Some of his supporters in the legislature have even proposed a formal military alliance with China.

Yet, members of the Philippines' defence establishment and the broader media-intelligentsia complex are pushing back. In striking contrast to Mr Duterte's rhetoric, they have consistently portrayed China as a source of threat.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 24, 2018, with the headline The Philippines' internal battle over its China policy. Subscribe