China vowedThursday to continue providing the Philippines with "necessaryassistance", a day after Beijing donated thousands of weapons to thecountry to help its fight against Islamist gunmen.
ForeignMinister Wang Yi made the remarks during a visit by his Philippine counterpartAlan Peter Cayetano and pledged China's help with reconstruction efforts in thewar-torn southern city of Marawi.
"Yesterdaythe first batch of emergency assistance was delivered to the Philippines,"Wang told a joint news conference in Beijing.
"In thefuture, in keeping with the Philippines' needs, we will continue to providenecessary assistance and help."
The smallshipment of assault and sniper rifles and ammunition is the first example ofChinese military aid since Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte threatened tomove away from Manila's traditional ally America and seek Beijing's support.
The weaponsshipment, worth some 50 million yuan ($7.35 million) "highlights the dawnof a new era in Philippine-Chinese relations", Duterte said.
The USembassy said earlier this month that special forces were also assisting thePhilippine military, although Duterte has said recently he had no knowledgeabout US technical assistance to the troops fighting in Marawi.
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