Diplomatic ties may be put to ‘naught’ if Canada won’t act on garbage: Panelo

“The seventy years of diplomatic relations between the two countries will be put to naught if Canada will not act with dispatch and finality the resolution of this undiplomatic episode to which we take outrage,” Presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement in response to Embassy of Canada’s statement regarding the garbage issue.

The Canadian embassy said that “Canada is strongly committed to collaborating with the government of the Philippines to resolve this issue and is aware of the court decision ordering the importer to ship the material back to Canada.”

“A joint technical working group, consisting of officials from both countries, is examining the full spectrum of issues related to the removal of the waste with a view to a timely resolution,” it added.

Panelo said the Palace acknowledges Canada’s quick but vague statement in relation to President Rodrigo Duterte’s April 23 remarks on the waste issue.

“We take note that its response is not appropriate to the strong statement we made against its throwing its garbage to our land,” Panelo added.

“Our stand against its making our country a garbage bin of their waste is non-negotiable. It can not dilly dally on its getting them back. It must retrieve them pronto or we throw them back to its shores. Its offensive act can not be countenanced and any further discussion on the matter is unwelcome and unnecessary,” he said.

“Not only has it not taken any decisive action on this arrant hostile demeanour, it has not likewise expressed regrets thereto,” he added.