• Reuters

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A trip to China by former Philippine leader Fidel Ramos, a special envoy chosen by President Rodrigo Duterte to initiate dialogue and repair ties with Beijing, has been canceled, an aide to Ramos said Tuesday.

Ramos would still go to Beijing, but at an appropriate time, according to the aide, who confirmed a posting on the website of the Philippines Embassy in Beijing that said a planned gathering of Philippine citizens with Ramos had been canceled.

No official announcement had been made of the trip by Ramos and it was not immediately clear with whom he had planned to meet.

Duterte picked Ramos to start a process of dialogue with China in the wake of a controversial ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Hague, which invalidated Beijing’s claim to most of the South China Sea.

China refuses to recognize the case, but both sides have pledged to pursue warmer ties.

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