MANILA: On Monday ( Feb 5 ) the defense minister of the Philippines vowed to” strictly enforce” the nation’s sovereignty, joining the chorus of security officials pledging to defend the country in response to secessionist threats made by former president Rodrigo Duterte.
As his empire with President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. fell apart last year due to disagreements over attempts to amend the constitution, Duterte called for the liberation of his home island Mindanao in the southeastern Philippines on January 30.
Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro stated in a statement that the Department of National Defense’s responsibility is to uphold the independence of the condition and the dignity of national territory as enshrined in the constitution.
” Whether directly or internally, we may strictly enforce this mission,” he continued.
Teodoro’s remarks were consistent with those of the national security adviser, who stated on Sunday that the government would not think twice to “use its power and forces to suppress and prevent any and all attempts to dismember the Republic.”