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After initially getting blocked by police, US lawmakers get to meet with De Lima

Xave Gregorio - Philstar.com

MANILA, Philippines — Lawmakers from the United States got to visit Friday former Sen. Leila de Lima in her detention facility in Camp Crame in Quezon City a day after they were barred by police for lacking a court order.

US Embassy Spokesperson Kanishka Gangopadhyay confirmed to Philstar.com that a congressional delegation met with De Lima.

According to a source, the eight-member delegation led by Sen. Edward Markey (D-Massachusetts) was able to enter the detention facility at noon and left after an hour and 15 minutes.

Two Muntinlupa courts granted Friday De Lima’s plea to let US lawmakers visit her after they were denied entry by police the day before.

In the order from Muntinlupa RTC Branch 204, De Lima is said to have pre-arranged and coordinated with the Philippine National Police on the US lawmakers’ visit to her, with a letter having been sent to police chief PGen. Rodolfo Azurin last August 10.

“However, despite follow ups, the PNP has not timely responded to the request,” read a portion of the order.

Markey also sent a letter to Azurin on August 9 informing him that he is leading a congressional delegation and requesting that they be allowed to meet De Lima in her detention facility on August 18. — with a report from Kristine Joy Patag

LEILA DE LIMA

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