PHL Embassy, Filipino community reaffirm enduring PHL-US ties on eve of US President Trump’s inauguration

MANILA-- The ties between the United States and the Philippines is expected to bolster during US President Donald Trump administration.

"We view transitions as opportunities to further relations. The US and the Philippines are treaty allies and we are ready to work on bolstering this alliance on the basis of sovereign equality and mutual respect. We believe friends help each other and utilize constructive engagement to achieve common goals of greater peace, progress and prosperity. We hope that the close ties between the Philippines and the US will continue to be strengthened in pursuit of common objectives, mutual interest and shared commitment to world peace," said Minister Patrick A. Chuasoto, Charge d'Affaires and interim of the Philippine Embassy, in his welcome remarks at a reception marking the inauguration of US President-elect Donald J. Trump.

The reception was held at the Embassy's Chancery Annex Building on Jan. 19, 2017, a day before Mr. Trump would be sworn in as the 45th President of the United States of America. Most of the more than 120 attendees are Filipino-Americans from different parts of the US who traveled to Washington, D.C. to witness the historic event.

"The Filipino diaspora has a lot to account for the strong people-to-people ties that bind the Philippines and the US. It is in this context that Filipino-Americans continue to be an important bridge between our two countries. All of you have the resources, skills and expertise to help perpetuate the conditions for a sustainable, symbiotic, and mutually beneficial engagement between the Philippines and the United States," Minister Chuasoto remarked.

Presidential Communications Secretary Jose Ruperto Martin Andanar and National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, Jr. were present at the reception. Both officials are in the US capital for the presidential inauguration. They expressed optimism about the future of Philippines-US relations under the Duterte and Trump Administrations.

"Wala po tayong dapat ikabahala, magiging maayos po ang relasyon natin, ang Pilipinas at Amerika. We have this long history of good relations, the United States being the big brother of the Philippines and with more than 3.5 million Filipinos who live in the US," Secretary Andanar said.

"We join hands with the Americans in witnessing the assumption of office of President Donald Trump and we are honored by that. We look at the presidency as an opportunity for us to renew our ties, strengthen our ties with a long-term ally who has been supporting us since we got our independence up to now," added Esperon.

Mr. W. Patrick Murphy, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State agreed and emphasized the shared democratic values, close cooperation, and rich people-to-people ties between the two countries.

"In 2017 we look forward to working with the Philippines for many reasons but one of the most important is that the Philippines has assumed chairmanship of ASEAN and ASEAN is pivotal, it is our keystone to our engagement with the entire Asia Pacific," Deputy Assistant Secretary Murphy said.

Minister Chuasoto then led the group in a toast to the Filipino-American community, the American people and US government, and the longstanding partnership and friendship between the Philippines and the United States.

The program concluded with a screening of the video on the Philippines' chairmanship of ASEAN this year. (PNA)

Source: Philippines information agency