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9月25日のまにら新聞から

Palace shrugs off US bill seeking to cut security aid to Philippines

[ 288 words|2020.9.25|英字 (English) ]

Malacanang downplayed on Thursday a bill filed in US Congress seeking to suspend America's provision of police or military assistance until it meets certain criteria, saying it is "a very wild suggestion."

In a televised press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque cited the good relationship between President Rodrigo Duterte and US President Donald Trump.

"We are at ease that the State Department and the administration of President Trump, because of the close friendship of our President with President Trump, can see the importance of the continued cooperation on the part of the United States and the Philippines," he said.

He also said that in the US Congress, like in the Philippines, any lawmaker can file a bill.

Roque expressed belief that the proposed Philippine Human Rights Act, sponsored by Pennsylvania Rep. Susan Wild, would not be passed.

"The chances of this bill is very small. So, let's leave it at that, that's a personal opinion of Congresswoman Wild, which is a very wild idea," he added.

He said that Wild is just one of the many lawmakers in the US and her proposal has to pass the US Senate as well.

Under her proposal, Wild wants to block US funding for police or military assistance to the Philippines as a "response" to the alleged human rights abuses in the Philippines.

Wild has said that before the assistance could be resumed, the Philippines should meet basic criteria, such as investigate and prosecute members of the military and police forces who are credibly found to have violated human rights; withdraw the military from domestic policy; and establish protection of the rights of trade unionists, journalists, human right defenders, indigenous person, small-farmers, LGBT activists, and critics of government, among others. Celerina Monte/DMS