On Tuesday, in Mawab Compostela Valley, President Duterte clarified in his speech that he did not ordered the American Forces in Mindanao to get out of the Philippines. And acknowledged that the Philippines will need its allies to defend against naval breach in West Philippines Sea.
“I said there will be some time in the future that I will ask the US special forces to get out, almost 117 of them, better that you get out so that I can talk peace… and so I can show that you are not there”, President Duterte said.
“I never said get out of the Philippines. For after all, we need them in China Sea”, the President added.
Last September 12, President Duterte had said that he asked the American soldiers to get out of Mindanao to prevent them from being kidnapped. This is due to the ongoing battle against the Abu Sayyaf Group.
President Duterte announced in a meeting in Bulacan, few days later, that he wanted the US soldiers to leave Mindanao so that the peace talks with the Moro rebels may be accomplished.
He also emphasized that he was not really against the Americans, its just that the Moro rebels have the idea that the Americans are manipulating the peace talks.
“Thats why I said (leave) Mindanao, I never said go out”, President Duterte said making clear of his point.