We are gladdened by and support whole-heartedly the urging of Vice President Sara Duterte to the Filipino people to “call for a ceasefire and for peaceful negotiations” among conflicting parties between Israel and the Palestinian people erupting from the October 7 Hamas blitzkrieg into southern Israel and resulting in the siege of Gaza that is threatening to become a carnage and ethnic cleansing.
We salute the act of personal conscience and courage of the Vice President of the Philippines speaking out for the-vast majority of the Filipino people concerned about disruption to global peace and stability, and economic recovery, and particularly the welfare of millions of the Philippines’ OFWs living and working in the Middle East including in Israel and Palestine.
Vice President Sara Duterte is correct in reflecting the very strong sentiment of millions of our Filipino Muslims who are calling for a fair, just and equitable resolution of the immediate crisis in the M.E. and the protection of civilian lives and well-being in the Gaza strip facing the onslaught of heinous Israeli indiscriminate bombings killing children, women, the infirm and innocent.
We laud Vice President Sara Duterte for presenting a judicious and conscientious position on the Israel-Palestine crisis against Malacañang’s supine U.S.-dictated “… the Philippines will always stand with Israel…” which goes against even the UN admonitions today and against the vast-majority of the Global South nations constituting over 80% of the World’s population.
In-light-of VP Sara’s enlightened response to the crisis, we also laud Asian and ASEAN’s call for an immediate ceasefire in the Israel-Gaza conflict and launching of talks. This call has been particularly energetically raised by the diplomatic leaders of the People’s Republic of China, namely Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Middle East special envoy Zhai Jun.
At the onset of the crisis Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has been in staccato calls, meetings and conference with foreign minsters of other major powers in the Middle East situation indefatigably hammering out propositions to help ese the crisis, achieve an immediate silencing of the guns and bombs to prepare the grounds for talks.
In an extraordinary event, representatives of Middle East countries collectively called on Chinese Middle East Special Envoy Zhai Jun to appeal for China’s mediation to stop the violence and help bring warring parties in talks. Thereafter Ambassador Zhai Jun scheduled the visit to the Middle East as news reports say “in a bid to contain war.”
The United States on the other hand immediately extended it unquestioning support for Israel, sends two aircraft carriers to the region and deploys 2000 American troops further escalating the tensions from regional to global. With such support Israel escalated with the bombing of a southern Gaza hospital that killed nearly thousand. The consequence of the incendiary actions of the U.S. is the scuttling of an arranged meet between U.S. President Biden and Arab leaders disgusted with U.S. justification and obfuscation for the horrific Israeli bombing of the Gaza hospital. The U.S. M.E. strategy is in tatters while China continues to expand its role as peacemaker- just as VP Sara Duterte has shown the way.