Press Release
August 22, 2023

Statement of Senator Risa Hontiveros on the Sangguniang Bayan of the Municipality of Kalayaan declaring Chinese Ambassador Huang Persona Non Grata

It is the prerogative of the Sangguniang Bayan of the municipality of Kalayaan to declare Ambassador Huang persona non grata. After all, why would they welcome someone who seems to encourage China's threats and harassment in their own shores? Why would they welcome someone who does not recognize their right to exist in the first place?

The residents and fisherfolk from Kalayaan have lost their traditional fishing grounds and their main source of livelihood because of China's presence in the West Philippine Sea. The municipality has all the right to defend their home, not least by banning individuals who continue to disrespect Philippine sovereignty and the dignity of the Filipino people.

In fact, Beijing should have already recalled Huang ever since he threatened Filipino OFWs in Taiwan. He should be replaced. He cannot be an effective diplomat in the Philippines if he continues to aggravate tensions rather than assuage them.

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