China protests against Sec. Lorenzana’s visit to Pag-asa Island

admin   •   April 24, 2017   •   3941

MANILA China is gravely concerned over the visit to Pag-asa Island last Friday of several Philippine government officials led by National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana .

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana has initially said that even before their plane landed on Pag-asa Island last Friday, they received four warnings from the Chinese forces.

However, the official said this is but normal when there are visitors that come to the island.

“Protocol yan, we also reply that we are flying  over Philippine territory, so yung challenged na yan, sagutan lang yan. Wala namang untoward incident na nangyari,” Secretary Lorenzana said. (That’s protocol. We also replied that we are flying over Philippine territory. So those challenge responses are required. There has been no untoward incident.)

Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lu Kang said this move runs counter to the important consensus reached between the two leaderships, President Xi Jinping and President Rodrigo Duterte. It is said that this is in line with resolving the issue in the South China Sea or West Philippine Sea.

But the Department of National Defense (DND) said it is part of the department secretary’s duty to inspect all facilities under his administration.

Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff General Eduardo Año sees no issues in these.

The official said Pag-asa Island is part of the Philippine territory where military troops are deployed.

Pag-asa Island is part of a municipality in Palawan.

The Department of Foreign Affairs maintained the department has initially stated it is the government’s duty to protect and ensure the security of Filipinos living on the island.

Meanwhile, upon visit to Pag-asa Island Secretary Lorenzana said he is not concerned over China’s reaction on the Philippine government’s move.

“Sagutan lang ng protest yan, so ganun lang muna yan, although we are managing the issues, through protests and dialogue, so wala naman sigurong mangyayarig hindi maganda,” he said. (There will be a series of protests. Although we are managing the issues, through protests and dialogue. So perhaps nothing bad will happen.) — Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue

DILG chief Año says he tested positive for COVID-19 anew

Robie de Guzman   •   January 11, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año on Tuesday confirmed he has contracted COVID-19 again.

In a statement, Año said he received his RT-PCR test yielding a positive result on Monday night.

He took the test after several of his close contacts had tested positive for coronavirus.

“Thankfully, I remain asymptomatic as of now,” he said. “I will continue to work while isolating.”

This is the third time that Año caught the viral disease. He first tested positive for coronavirus disease in March and then in August last year.

“I encourage everyone to get vaccinated and boostered as soon as possible, and to continue following health protocols,” he said.

DFA temporarily closes some passport service sites amid rising COVID cases

Robie de Guzman   •   January 10, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Monday announced it will be temporarily closing some of its consular offices amid increasing COVID-19 cases in the country.

In an advisory, the DFA said its Office of Consular Affairs (OCA), Consular Offices (COs) and Temporary Off-Site Passport Services (TOPS) sites will temporarily suspend operations from January 10 to 20, 2022 due to the steep rise in COVID-19 cases among their personnel.

During the temporary suspension of operations, no passport or Apostille applications will be processed or released, the DFA said.

Operations shall resume on January 21, 2022.

Kindly direct any inquiries to the Consular Office where the application was filed, the department said.

The following offices will be closed from January 10 to 20:

  • CO La Union (January 10-14)
  • CO NCR East
  • CO NCR North
  • TOPS Robinsons Novaliches

The following offices will be closed from January 12 to 20, 2022:

  • DFA Office of Consular Affairs in Aseana Business Park, Paranaque City
  • CO NCR Central
  • CO NCR Northeast
  • CO NCR South
  • CO NCR West
  • CO Antipolo
  • CO Angeles
  • CO Baguio
  • CO Dasmarinas
  • CO Iloilo
  • CO Lucena
  • CO Malolos
  • CO San Pablo
  • TOPS Newport Mall
  • TOPS Robinsons Las Pinas
  • TOPS Robinsons San Pedro Laguna
  • TOPS SM Manila
  • TOPS SM MOA
  • TOPS SM North EDSA

Affected Passport and Apostille applicants originally scheduled from January 12 to 20, 2022 at DFA Aseana are advised to refer to their new schedule of appointments posted at the DFA website.

“Please expect an email with further details about your appointment which will be sent to the email address you used when you booked your application,” the DFA said.

Former AFP chief Abadia passes away

Robie de Guzman   •   January 10, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – Former Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff General Lisandro Abadia has passed away, the military said Monday.

In a statement, the AFP extended its sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Abadia.

“General Abadia served as the CSAFP in the early ‘90s and has paved the way for the professionalization of the military and the return of meritocracy in its promotion system,” the AFP said.

“He also led the AFP Campaign Plan ‘Lambat Bitag’ that significantly decreased the strength of the communist terrorist group,” it added.

Abadia led the AFP from April 1991 to April 1994.

He was a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class of 1962.

The AFP said appropriate military honors will be provided in recognition of the former Chief of Staff’s legacy and sacrifices as a soldier and head of the military.

“Again, we send our deep condolences and sympathies to his family,” it said.

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