Senate Minority Leader Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III (MANILA BULLETIN)
Senate Minority Leader Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III doesn’t agree with the municipal government of Kalayaan’s move of declaring Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian a “persona non grata”.
In a statement Monday, Aug. 21, Pimentel said that such actions by the Sangguniang Bayan of Kalayaan in the province of Palawan in Western part of the country should be “avoided as much as possible”.
“The ambassador of a foreign country to the Philippines is the representative of that country to our country. We should go slow in declaring foreign ambassadors as personas non grata. Avoid this as much as possible,” said the veteran legislator from Mindanao.
“All grievances related to ambassadors and foreign relations must be coursed through our Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) so these grievances can be ‘professionally’ handled,” he added.
A persona non grata in this context basically means an “unwelcome person”.
Last Aug. 5, two Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) vessels on a resupply mission to BRP Sierra Madre in Ayungin Shoal were blasted with water cannons by the China Coast Guard.
The shoal sits just 105 nautical miles west of Palawan and is within the country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the Philippines.