Philippines Does Not Support Anti-Chinese Demo – Cuisia
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WASHINGTON D.C. – Ambassador to the United States Jose L. Cuisia, Jr. has said he Philippines does not endorse the worldwide anti-Chinese demonstration called by the US Pinoys for Good Government (UKP4GG) for Friday, May 11.
The ambassador said "Secretary of Foreign Affairs (Albert del Rosario) and I are not endorsing the rally which the US Pinoys for Good Governance (USP4GG) is organizing. If anyone is saying that, please make sure that that statement is corrected."
Scores of Filipinos and Filipino Americans staged a loud demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy at 3505 International Place, NW in Washington cd.C. They carried signs like "STOP China's Bullying of the Philippines" and Wake Up, ASEAN neighbors.
Organizers of the DC demo are Eric Lachica and Dr. Bambi Lorica.
Cuisia stressed that while "we respect the right of each individual to freedom of speech, we would not want to contribute to any activity that would exacerbate the current tension between the Philippines and China."
The call for a worldwide demonstration against all Chinese embassies and consulates was made by NY leader Loida Nicolas Lewis and Rodel Lewis, head of USP4GG in San Francisco. The protests is to denounce China's intrusion on the Panatag Shoal (Scarborough) which is well within the economic zone as spelled out by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas (UNCLOS).
The ambassador noted that Secretary del Rosario is pursuing a 3- track approach for a peaceful settlement of the conflict in the Scarborough Shoal, (Panatag Shoal). These are political, legal, and diplomatic. "So the Philippine Embassy and the Consulates in the US are committed to these modalities."
The ambassador issued the statement after some organizers of the demonstration slated at noon of May 11 are reported saying the rally is endorsed by Del Rosario and the embassy.
Panatag, in Tagalog, means tranquil and peaceful, but that is hardly the current situation over the much-disputed clump of island and reefs in the West Philippine Sea, he demonstrators said.
"A strong showing of support and solidarity by Filipinos in the Diaspora will impress on China that it is not just confronting a small country that it can easily bully, but one that has citizens scattered throughout the world who can mobilize and galvanize public opinion against China," Rodis said.
USP4GG national spokesman Ted Laguatan also "called on all Filipinos and all those others who believe in freedom and the right of every country to control its own destiny to join us in a global demonstration at Chinese embassies and consulates in the United States and around the world at noon Friday, May 11."
In an editorial published on April 25 by China's Global Times, it was said that "China is prepared to engage in a small-scale war at sea with the Philippines."