PHL to strengthen ties with Israel, envoy tells OFWs

The Philippine government will continue to strengthen its bilateral relations with Israel, Ambassador Macairog Alberto assured overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).

Alberto issued the statement through an advisory dated June 1 after he was summoned by Israel’s Foreign Ministry to clarify the Philippines’ vote supporting the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council’s investigation on Israel’s Operation Guardian of the Walls, which apparently raised concerns among Filipinos working in the country.

“Hinihikayat ang lahat ng OFWs sa Israel na huwag magpaapekto sa usaping ito at mag-focus sa trabaho. Patuloy nating ipakita ang galing at sipag ng isang manggagawang Pilipino (All OFWs are urged not to be affected by this and to focus on work. Let us show that Filipino workers are professional and diligent),” he said.

He added that the issue with Manila’s vote before the UNHRC is a “multilateral issue” and is not only discussed at the Embassy level.

“Ang Ambassador sa Permanent Mission ng Pilipinas sa Geneva ay bumoto sa UNHRC, batay sa kanilang pagsusuri ng mga impormasyong kanilang nakalap. Ang Ambassador ng Pilipinas sa Israel bilang representante ng gobyerno, ay siyang humarap sa mga opisyal ng gobyerno ng Israel upang linawin ang usaping ito (Our Ambassador at the Philippine Permanent Mission in Geneva voted based on their assessment of the information they had on hand. As the representative of the Philippine government, the Philippine envoy in Israel met with Israeli officials to discuss this subject),” he said.

Alberto assured all Filipinos residing in Israel that the Embassy will continue to protect their welfare while ensuring that the good relations between the two nations remain.

“Ang ating gobyerno at Embahada sa Israel ay patuloy sa pagpapaigting ng bilateral relations ng Pilipinas sa Israel (Our government and the Embassy continues to advance our relations with Israel),” he said.

On May 30, Israel’s Foreign Ministry Deputy Director-General for the Asia-Pacific Gilad Cohen told Alberto that Manila’s UNHRC vote is “unacceptable” to Israel. PNA.GOV.PH