DFA assures Chinese embassy of safety of citizens

Posted at 09/02/14 10:30 PM

MANILA - The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) assured the Chinese embassy of appropriate and necessary protection to guard its citizens against threats and violent incidents.

Lingxiao Li, spokesperson of the Chinese Embassy in Manila, said: "We ask the Philippine government to carry out thorough investigations into this case. We hope and believe the Philippines side will take effective measures to ensure the security of the Chinese embassy and staff, as well as all Chinese nationals residing in the Philippines."

Lingxiao said that under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, "the host country is under a special duty to take all appropriate steps to protect the premises of diplomatic missions against any intrusion or damage, and prevent any attack on diplomatic staff."

Three men were earlier arrested over a foiled attempt to bomb the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3. They also allegedly planned to attack the Chinese embassy, the SM Mall of Asia, and the main office of real estate firm DMCI.

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said the series of attacks were meant to publicize their anti-China stance.

"They claim to be defenders of the Filipino people and consider China and (Filipino-Chinese) oligarch taipans' monopolistic business practices and illegal mining as enemies," she said.

She dismissed it as a terrorist attack.

Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang also ridiculed the suspects, noting it was just “comic relief” since the supposed bombs were “just firecrackers.”

The DFA said it will provide the Chinese Embassy with relevant information as the investigation progresses. – with reports from Jay Ruiz, ABS-CBN News