PH envoy summoned over Binay remarks
MALAYSIAN Foreign Minister Wisma Putra has summoned a senior Philippine diplomat over published remarks by Vice President Jejomar Binay that he would pursue his country’s territorial claim to Sabah, according to reports from the Asian News Network.
The Malaysian Foreign Ministry said in a statement it had called in the Philippine Embassy’s charge d’ affaires, Maria Antonina Mendoza-Oblena, over Binay’s remarks.
“The Malaysian government reiterates its position that it does not recognize and will not entertain any claims by any party on Sabah,” Wisma Putra said.
It said that Sabah has been recognized by the United Nations and the international community as being part of Malaysia since the formation of the federation on Sept. 16, 1963.
Sought for comment, Joey Salgado, Binay’s spokesperson, said, “We do not understand the reason for summoning the charge d’ affaires. The statement of the Vice President is consistent with the official position taken by the Philippine government on the matter.”
The Department of Foreign Affairs, on the other hand, is verifying the report.
Binay, who is running for President under the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), told reporters during a campaign sortie in Quezon he would revive the Sabah claim if he wins the presidency.
“Ipagpapatuloy natin ang claim natin diyan, atin naman ‘yan [We will pursue our claim there, that is ours],” Binay had told reporters in Candelaria town.
One of UNA’s senatorial candidates is Sulu Sultanate Princess Jacel Kiram, whose family claims historic ownership of Sabah. ANN, with a report from Niña Calleja
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