“Palace supports me,” Foreign Affairs secretary says
(Eagle News) — There will be no joint Philippines-China investigation into the Recto Bank incident.
This was the remark of Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr., a day after Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said President Rodrigo Duterte welcomed China’s proposal for the same.
“China and Philippines will conduct their respective investigations,” Locsin said in a Tweet.
According to the Foreign Affairs secretary, in the first place, the matter was “beyond civilian agencies’ remit and well within the (Department of Foreign Affairs’, the Department of National Defense’s and the National Security Agency’s). Period.”
He said he has spoken to Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, and the “Palace supports me.”
“DFA will act on MY VIEW & no one else’s,” Locsin said, adding that he would only listen to the DND and the NSA.
It was China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang who proposed on Thursday, June 20, the conduct of a joint probe into the June 13 allision between a Chinese vessel and a Filipino fishing boat, and the Chinese vessel’s subsequent abandonment of the 22 Filipino crew members.
On the same day, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said Duterte “welcomes” the proposal, and was looking forward to an “early resolution” of the case.