Philippines welcomes independent investigation on its campaign against illegal drugs – Cayetano
admin • September 28, 2017 • 5793
After personally meeting each other at the United Nations General Assembly, Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano and his American counterpart U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson held a bilateral meeting at Washington DC in the United States this week.
“We have a number of important issues on which to discuss, not the least of which is the important upcoming East Asia Summit in Manila, so, welcome Mr. Secretary,” said Tillerson.
Secretary Cayetano told Secretary Tillerson that the Philippines is ready to allow independent observers or investigators to scrutinize Philippine’s problem on illegal drugs, and the administration’s war on drugs.
However, Cayetano requested for an honest conduct of investigation that is not tainted with politics.
The Philippines’ Foreign Affairs secretary emphasized to Tillerson that the Philippines does not allow state-sponsored killings, especially of drug suspects.
Cayetano also expressed gratitude to the United States for helping the Duterte administration in its campaign against illicit drugs, noting that the Philippines remains open to receiving more aid from the Washington.
Before his bilateral meeting with Tillerson, Cayetano participated in a forum at the headquarters of the central for strategic and international studies, a think tank group based in Washington DC. He discussed the current foreign policy of the Philippines, including the controversial issue of North Korea.
According to the former senator and now diplomat, the Philippines’ Department of Foreign Affairs is coordinating with Philippine embassies and consulates near North Korea regarding preparations in the event the tension between Washington and Pyongyang further escalates.
“Well as much as humanly possible, all our embassies and posts are preparing in areas that can be reached by the missiles of North Korea. As you know, they mentioned Guam and then, of course, South Korea then Japan. But we will join in prayers for such an incident not to happen,” said Cayetano. — Rey Pelayo | UNTV News & Rescue
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte is open to listening to the public about their sentiments on the issue regarding the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) with the United States (US).
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque Jr. said those who wish to voice out their opinions on whether the VFA should be abolished or not can send messages through the government hotline 8888.
“Kung nais ninyong marinig ang inyong boses tungkol dito, huwag po kayong mag-atubili, kayo po ay magpadala ng e-mail o mensahe o kung anuman doon sa mga linya ng ating mga ahensiya sa gobyerno para makarating po kay Presidente (If you want your voices to be heard, do not hesitate and send an email or message through government agency hotlines for it to reach the President),“ he said.
Duterte, during his public address on Wednesday (February 24), said he is still undecided on what to do. He previously demanded the US to pay if it wants the VFA to continue.
Meanwhile, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Lt.Gen. Cirilito Sobejana said the military will support the decision of the President but also said the Philippines should be able to defend itself without any assistance. -AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Embassy in Washington has cautioned Filipinos in the United States (US) to stay safe and vigilant amid rising incidents of anti-Asian attacks in various parts of the US.
The Embassy and the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) also called on the local authorities in the US to further ensure the protection of Asian Americans, including Filipinos.
“The Philippine Embassy and Consulates General in the United States appreciate the swift action taken by a number of local authorities to apprehend perpetrators of these attacks. However, we call on federal, state, and local authorities to further ensure the protection of persons of Asian descent, including Filipinos,” the DFA said.
Among the reports concerning violence against those of Asian descent include the case of Filipino-American Noel Quintana who was slashed in the face by a fellow subway passenger early February this year.
Filipinos in the US have been advised to immediately call 911 if they experience an attack. AAC
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