Press Release
September 28, 2010

Enrile helps mend RP-China ties

The recent four-day visit of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and Sen. Franklin Drilon to Jiangxi Province in China served as a goodwill measure to help mend RP-China relations which had been strained by the August 23 hostage-taking at the Luneta Grandstand that claimed the lives of eight Hong Kong tourists.

Enrile and Drilon were invited by the leaders of Jiangxi province who hosted the Philippine Senators as guests in the Opening Ceremonies of the Expo Central China 2010.

For his part, Senate President Enrile took the opportunity to express their apology for the unfortunate hostage-taking fiasco, saying that it was an incident that nobody expected nor wanted to happen. They also explained to their Chinese hosts that Filipinos do not practice nor tolerate racial discrimination and do not want any conflict with the Chinese people.

The senators also conveyed the Philippine government's deep sympathy to the families of the victims and expressed hope for the swift recovery of the survivors of the hostage-taking.

Enrile told the Chinese that, in his more than 40 years in public service, he knew very well that the Philippine government has always been mindful and protective of RP-China relations. The Philippine government never intended to cause any harm or injury to existing bilateral relations, and that the Philippine government has always supported and undertaken initiatives that would further promote bilateral relations.

The two senators also expressed their gratitude for the hospitality of their Chinese people and thanked their hosts for ensuring that their short stay in the province proceeded without any untoward incident.

Among the local Chinese officials who met with Enrile and Drilon were Wang Qishan, Vice Premier in Charge of Economic, Energy and Financial Affairs; Su Rong, Party Secretary of Jiangxi Province; Zheng Xiang, Secretary of the "Lushan Scenic and Historic Interest Area Administration Bureau" Committee of the Communist Party of China and Director General of the same Bureau; Sun Gang, Vice Governor of the Jiangxi Provincial People's Government; ; and Chen Xiumao, Chairman of the Xiamen Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).

The visit to Jiangxi province by the two Philippine senators was hosted by a private group. While in Jiangxi Province, Enrile and Drilon visited Mount Lushan and Nanchang City.

The two lawmakers were also given a welcome reception by the Organizing Committee of the Expo Central China 2010.

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