PH keeping good ties with Israel despite vote for UN rights probe in Gaza
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines will maintain good diplomatic ties with Israel even if Manila voted to affirm a United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) resolution that seeks an investigation into alleged rights abuses in Gaza.
This was according to Philippine Ambassador to Israel Macairog Alberto, who confirmed that embassy officials met with the Israeli government regarding the matter.
“Ginagawa po natin ang lahat ng paraan para po yung impact ng naging botohan doon [sa UNHRC] ay hindi maapektuhan ang mga nandito po sa Israel at ang ating relasyon sa bansa ng israel,” Alberto said during the Laging Handa briefing.
(We are doing everything we can so that the impact of the voting that happened will not affect Filipinos here in Israel as well as our relations with Israel.)
“Makakasiguro po kayo na ang Department of Foreigns Affairs ang embahada ng Pilipinas [ay] gagawin ang lahat para mapanatili na maganda ang relasyon natin sa bansa ng Israel,” he added.
(We can assure you that the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Philippine embassy are doing their best to maintain our good relations with Israel.)
Israel’s foreign ministry earlier said it summoned Alberto for a “clarification discussion” over the Philippines’ vote favoring an international probe into alleged violations in Gaza amid the latest violence in the region.
The Philippines was among the 24 UNHRC members that voted in favor of the resolution, which prompts greater scrutiny on abuses and their “root causes” in the decades-long Middle East conflict.
Filipinos in Israel
Meanwhile, Alberto assured that Filipinos in Israel are safe and have returned to work. The embassy, he added, stands ready to help those who would seek assistance.
“Ngayon po nagkaroon po ng ceasefire mula po nung May 21. So mapayapa na po ang sitwasyon sa Gaza gayun din po sa Israel. So inaasahan po natin na magpatuloy ang katahimikan,” he said.
(There has been a ceasefire since May 21. So the situation in Gaza and Israel is peaceful. So we are expecting that this peaceful situation will continue on.)
“Ligtas po ‘yung mga Pilipino natin, sa ngayon po balik trabaho na po sila,” he added.
(Filipinos here are safe and have started going back to work.)
Approximately 29,000 Filipinos are in Israel, according to the ambassador.
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