Terrorism remains a major threat to global security despite the current coronavirus pandemic and the Philippines will work with its partners to boost security, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte said on Tuesday.
“As I said at the Aqaba Process, the Philippines will do everything and partner with anyone who would sincerely desire to protect the innocent from terrorism in all its manifestations,” President Duterte said in a speech during the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly.
“The Marawi siege, where foreign terrorist fighters took part, taught us that an effective legal framework is crucial. Our 2020 Anti-Terrorism Act shores up the legal framework by focusing on both terrorism and the usual reckless response to it.”
The enactment of the law, the President said, was done pursuant to the country’s commitment, and the strict adherence to the UN’s Security Council resolutions and the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.
Most importantly, the Philippines remains committed to rebuild stricken communities and address the root causes of terrorism and violent extremism, he added.
President Duterte also told other leaders that the Philippines maintains its commitment to the Charter of the United Nations as amplified by the 1982 Manila Declaration on the Peaceful Settlement of International Disputes.
“The Philippines affirms that commitment in the South China Sea in accordance with UNCLOS and the 2016 Arbitral Award,” he said.
“The Award is now part of international law, beyond compromise and beyond the reach of passing governments to dilute, diminish or abandon.”
The Philippines firmly rejects attempts to undermine it and the country welcomes the increasing number of states that have manifested support of the award and what it stands for — the triumph of reason over rashness, of law over disorder, of amity over ambition.
Also during his speech, President Duterte raised the threat posed by nuclear, chemical and biological weapons that can cause mass destruction especially if they fall in the wrong hands.
He called on all member states to fully implement the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and the Chemical and the Biological Weapons Conventions.
“I have asked the Philippine Senate to ratify the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Importantly, we were among those to sign it first,” he said. PND