Former Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario is still held at the Hong Kong International Airport on June 21 for at least three hours.
Ex-top diplomat Del Rosario hits joint probe into Recto Bank allision
Kristine Joy Patag ( - June 21, 2019 - 11:21am

MANILA, Philippine — Former top diplomat Albert del Rosario hit the proposed plan for a joint inquiry between Beijing and Manila into the allision at Recto Bank

Del Rosario, in a statement posted by News5, called the joint probe “worst news yet” and called China, whose fishermen are accused of deserting 22 Filipinos in the middle of waters, a “bully.”

“It redounds to a potential partnership between one party (PH who is out to seek the truth) against another party (China, the bully) who is out to suppress it,” he said.

But Del Rosario said: “We should really feel sorry for our poor fishermen as the ultimate product of a joint probe with Beijing is expected to be no more than a bowl of fruit salad.”

“Can we please not insult the intelligence of our people?” he also said.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said Thursday that he suggested a joint probe between the two countries into the allision at Recto Bank on June 9. Twenty-two fishermen were left in the middle of waters after a Chinese vessel rammed into their boat.

Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo, meanwhile, said that President Rodrigo Duterte welcomes a joint probe.

Beijing, through Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Lu Kang, also called for a joint investigation “so the two sides can exchange respective initial findings and properly.

But Foreign Affairs Secretary Theodore Locsin, however, thumbed down the joint probe. “There will be no joint investigation, China and Philippines will conduct their respective investigations.”

Del Rosario detention

Hours after Del Rosario released the statement, the former top diplomat was held at the Hong Kong International Airport.

His lawyer, Ann Marie Corominas, said that Del Rosario, who was in Hong Kong to attend a stockholders meeting, has yet to be informed why he was being held at the airport.

Corominas said that Del Rosario should not be held at an airport since he is a holder of a diplomatic passport.

Del Rosario and former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales filed a communication before the International Criminal Court that alleges crimes against humanity against Chinese President Xi Jinping.

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