Philippines apologizes to Kuwait on maids row
Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the Philippines Alan Peter Cayetano has expressed his country's apology for the government of the State of Kuwait, leadership and people for what he believed was an offense caused by his country's Embassy in Kuwait.
"I apologize to my counterpart and to the Kuwaiti government, leadership and people if they were offended by some action taken by the Philippines Embassy in Kuwait", the Secretary was quoted as saying by the CNN picked up here on Tuesday.
"But we have explained to their (Kuwait) ambassador and the ambassador accepted this explanation but of course we will send it to our counterpart.
"This was done in the spirit of emergency action to protect Filipinos. so what will be done to prevent this from happening in the future, the Kuwaiti side has committed to the protection and welfare of Filipinos and put in mechanism cooperation and collaboration so that we ensure that anyone who asks for help will be immediately assisted and those with cases will be assisted," he added.
On the other side, the Philippines side has assured the Kuwaiti counterpart that "we will follow their loss and of course we will respect Kuwaiti sovereignty and dignity by acting according to bonds of international law." He also spoke about strengthening the 24/7 hotline for protecting his country's citizens.
Kuwait has taken effective measures in response to the "incendiary remarks" made by the Filipino ambassador to the Gulf State, Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah said on Monday.
Kuwait has taken umbrage at the Filipino envoy's comments as well as the "questionable conduct" on the part of Manila's diplomatic staff in the country, the Kuwaiti foreign minister told the Cabinet in its weekly meeting.
He stressed that the actions have been deemed a threat to Kuwait's sovereignty in a country that prides itself on its immaculate human rights record.
Kuwait Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled Al-Jarallah said Monday reducing number of Filipino diplomats in Kuwait was "possible" following "violations and statements" by the officials in the Philippines.
However, Al-Jarallah ruled out relations between the two countries would be severed.
"The standoff with the Philippines is fabricated and the officials in Manila are the ones who started this current standoff," Al-Jarallah told the final session of the Arab Media Forum.
"There are a large number of Filipinos who have been living in peace for years in this country (Kuwait), so it is quite strange this issue develops so fast," he added.
Inspectors have detained two Filipinos as they were enticing female housemaids of the same nationality to escape from their employers' households, Kuwait Ministry of Interior (MoI) announced on Sunday.
Source: KUNA [Link]