MANILA, Aug. 7 (Xinhua) -- Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte declared that his country would never allow the United States to deploy missile systems on its soil.
Although there exists the Mutual Defense Treaty between the Philippines and the United States, Duterte said late on Tuesday that he would bar the entry of foreign weapons, including nuclear arsenal in the country since this is considered a violation of the Philippine Constitution.
"There's an item in the newspaper that they are going to place some ballistic mid-range (missiles). That can never happen," Duterte said before a gathering of Filipino-Chinese business leaders at Malacanang, the presidential palace.
"That will never happen because I will not allow (it) because it's also a violation of the Constitution. You cannot place nuclear arms in the Philippines," Duterte added.
Moreover, he said he would not allow any "foreign troops" in the country.
The United States formally withdrew from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty with Russia on Aug. 2, which was signed by the former Soviet Union and the United States back in 1987.
Right after pulling out of the INF treaty, the United States is seeking deployment of its mid-range missiles in the Asia-Pacific region.
On Friday last week, U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper told reporters in Sydney that he wants to deploy an intermediate-range conventional missile in the Asia-Pacific region within months.