News Brief

Strengthening Bilateral Ties, Jaishankar Supports Philippines "Safeguarding National Sovereignty" Amid Maritime Dispute With China

Bhuvan Krishna

Mar 26, 2024, 04:04 PM | Updated 04:02 PM IST

Dr S Jaishankar with Philippines President Bongbong Marcos
Dr S Jaishankar with Philippines President Bongbong Marcos

On 26 March, External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar affirmed India's strong backing for the Philippines in defending its national sovereignty, especially in light of the Southeast Asian nation's ongoing maritime dispute with China in the South China Sea.

Since 2022, the Philippines has taken a firm stance against what it perceives as Chinese aggression and has refused Chinese demands to avoid areas in the sea that China claims, while China is wary of its efforts to enhance ties with its defence treaty partner, the United States.

During a press briefing in Manila, Jaishankar highlighted the fruitful discussions he had with his counterpart, Enrique Manalo, in Manila, according to a report from The Hindu.

"I wish to reaffirm India's unwavering support to the Philippines in safeguarding its national sovereignty," Jaishankar stated.

He emphasised the necessity for India and the Philippines to enhance their cooperation significantly to influence the evolving global order.

In response to a query, he asserted that every nation has the right to protect and uphold its national sovereignty.

"We also deliberated on this matter," he further stated.

Jaishankar noted the substantial growth in bilateral relations between India and the Philippines in recent times.

These comments came at a time when the Indian Coast Guard ship Samudra Paheredar, a specialised pollution control vessel also arrived at Manila Bay, Philippines, on 25 March 2024, for a three-day visit.

This visit is part of a broader initiative aimed at demonstrating the Indian Coast Guard's marine pollution response capabilities and shared concern towards marine pollution in the ASEAN region.

Bhuvan Krishna is Staff Writer at Swarajya.

Get Swarajya in your inbox.


A road trip through the poorest regions of India — its heartland