By Edu Punay | The Philippine Star
MANILA, Philippines — More world leaders have congratulated presumptive president Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and the Filipino people for the conduct of the elections last Monday.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison sent his congratulatory message via his official Twitter account: “I congratulate Ferdinand Marcos Jr. @bongbongmarcos on being elected President of the Philippines at the national elections on 9 May.”
“Following the 75th anniversary of Australia-Philippines relations last year, we look forward to continuing to advance our long-standing friendship,” Morrison’s post added.
The government of Israel also chimed in through a message from its embassy in Manila: “We congratulate the Philippines for demonstrating democracy through the national and local elections last May 9.”
“Israel will continue to work closely with the incoming administration of the Philippines to strengthen the friendly historic ties of our nations and to deepen the existing partnerships in agriculture, food security, water, tourism, innovation and technology, defense, among others,” it stressed.
Earlier, United States President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping sent their congratulatory messages via separate phone calls to Marcos.
Both leaders expressed on Thursday their continued cooperation and bilateral relationship with the Philippines.
Marcos was grateful for the acknowledgement of his victory by the American president, which he considers as “one of the most important messages for his incoming administration.”
Marcos and Biden spoke of strengthening ties in trade and diplomacy, as well as their common interest in democracy, self-determination and economic recovery.
The former senator also assured Biden that “the Philippines has always held the United States in high regard as a friend, an ally, and a partner.”
“I have also invited President Biden to my inaugural on June 30, which could further fortify the relationship of the two countries,” Marcos revealed in a statement.
The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) also welcomed the congratulatory messages of Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
“These reflect a very high regard for the alliance and an affirmation of the Philippines’ vibrant democracy as embodied by our recent national elections, which their Embassy and some visiting US government officials observed first hand,” the DFA said in a statement released Thursday.
The DFA has yet to issue its reaction to the congratulatory messages from other world leaders, including that of Xi.
Japanese Ambassador Kazuhiko Koshikawa also welcomed the results of the elections and said he looks forward to working with the new administration in bringing the ties between Japan and the Philippines “to greater heights.”
In a post on the embassy’s official Twitter account, Koshikawa congratulated the Philippines for the conduct of the national elections, calling it an “incredible exercise of democracy.”
Likewise, the European Union Delegation to the Philippines commended the country for “a peaceful, free, and fair democratic elections.”
In a message posted on its official Facebook page, the delegation expressed its readiness “to work with the incoming administration for the next six years and foster closer EU-Philippines relations.”
In a separate statement, EU High Representative for foreign affairs and security policy Josep Borrell Fontelles also congratulated Marcos and said the EU “looks forward to working with the new administration to advance our relations and EU-ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) ties.”
Marcos’ spokesman Vic Rodriguez stressed that the incoming administration’s foreign policy would not be exclusive to any nation, and that the interest of Filipinos will be prioritized.
“The foreign policy of president-elect Bongbong will be inclusive. We will not be exclusive to anyone, the interest of Filipino people and the national interest comes first and they will never be compromised, especially on our territorial integrity, it will never be compromised,” he pointed out. – Janvic Mateo