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Palace on Hontiveros’ call to recall diplomats to China: We don’t need your advice

Malacañang on Thursday said it is up to Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. whether to heed the advice of opposition Senator Risa Hontiveros to recall Philippine diplomats to China.
"Lahat ng options kino-consider ‘yan. We don’t need the advice of the good senator on that," presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said at a news conference.

Hontiveros issued the suggestion after a Chinese fishing vessel reportedly hit and sank a Filipino fishing boat in the vicinity of the disputed Recto Bank on June 9, an incident that drew outrage from several lawmakers and prompted the Philippines to file a diplomatic protest.

China has not commented yet on the incident even as Panelo did not see the need to summon Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Zhao Jianhua to explain his government's position.

"I think we don’t have to summon him. If he’s listening now, he should explain," the Palace spokesman said.

Hontiveros said a recall order should remain in full effect until the Chinese government has identified the Chinese vessel, whether civilian or military, that collided with and sank the Filipino boat and explain its presence in the West Philippine Sea.

“It stands to reason that if President Duterte can order the recall of our envoy and consuls in Canada over a dispute on garbage, he can do the same to defend and secure the lives of our fisherfolk and the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity,” Hontiveros said in a press statement.

The senator said the Chinese government should identify and punish the captain and entire crew of the Chinese vessel who abandoned the distressed fisherfolk to the sea.

Hontiveros added China should make a commitment that such incidents will not happen again in the future. — RSJ, GMA News

Palace on Hontiveros’ call to recall diplomats to China: We don’t need your advice Palace on Hontiveros’ call to recall diplomats to China: We don’t need your advice Reviewed by AsianPolicy.Press on 2:11:00 PM Rating: 5

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