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Duterte’s Stance on South China Sea Faces Test on Hanoi Trip

  • U.S. and Vietnam hold joint naval training in the area
  • Duterte ready to discuss South China Sea dispute in talks
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Duterte Talks Maritime Security in Vietnam Visit

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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s stance on territorial disputes in the South China Sea will face a fresh international test on Thursday as he meets leaders in Hanoi a day after the U.S. and Vietnam started naval drills in the waters.

Duterte, who also plans to visit China and Japan next month, will meet with President Tran Dai Quang and Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc during the two-day state visit. The Philippine leader said he’ll look to solidify a “strategic partnership" between the nations, which in recent years have shared a common position in opposing China’s expansionism in the South China Sea.