Duterte: PH, China 'stand together' in war vs. drugs, terrorism

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President Rodrigo Duterte speaks before world leaders at the Boao Forum for Asia in Hainan, China Tuesday.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 10) — President Rodrigo Duterte said China stands with the Philippines in its flagship campaign against illegal drugs and terrorism.

"With China, we stand together in the war on criminality and illegal drug trade. We are shoulder to shoulder in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism," Duterte told world leaders at the Boao Forum for Asia in Hainan, China Tuesday.

The President also said that corruption, along with the illegal drug trade, is a "pernicious" and "rotten social disease" that hounds the Philippines.

But Duterte explained the Philippines has made headway in achieving peace and stability in the country.

"Make no mistake: There can be no progress without stability in Asia's lands and waters," he added.

The Duterte administration's drug war has been the subject of criticism of various local and international human rights groups.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has since ordered a review into alleged human rights violations linked to the drug war.

China has showed support for the Philippines' drug war due to its supposed positive effects to the country, and it also welcomed the Duterte administration's move to withdraw from the ICC.

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lu Kang has also called on other nations to support Duterte's campaign.

READ: China supports PH withdrawal from ICC

Government data show there are at least 4,000 drug-related deaths in legitimate police operations, but rights groups believe the number to be as high as 13,000.

In June 2017, at the height of the Marawi siege, China donated thousands of weapons worth some 50 million yuan ($7.35 million) to help fight the Maute terrorists. Duterte said the move "highlights the dawn of a new era in Philippine-Chinese relations."