Press Release
April 30, 2018

Koko seeks normalization of PH-Kuwait ties

Senate President Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III on Monday said that he looks forward to normalizing ties between the Philippines and Kuwait as soon as possible.

Kuwait expelled the Philippine ambassador after a video of an operation to rescue an OFW surfaced in the media.

"I am inspired by the Korean example. If, after a full-blown war and decades of tension, two countries can make peace, what more two countries that have always enjoyed good relations and have strong economic ties? The Philippines and Kuwait need each other", said Pimentel.

The Senate President however said that the current situation must first be defused.

Pimentel said, "Let's look at the Koreas - we need high-level contacts, honest discussions, and most importantly, no posting on social media or anywhere else on the Internet."

The Senate leader said that for relations to be repaired, public relations stunts must be avoided.

Pimentel said, "This is a highly-charged issue that is very tempting to politicize. Let's put the country's interests first and let the Department of Foreign Affairs take charge so that only one voice is heard by the Kuwaitis."

The Senate leader, who proposed the creation of a department for OFW affairs, said that OFW welfare must remain the highest priority in any agreement with Kuwait.

Pimentel said, "There are many OFWs in the region. Perhaps we can ask the help of Saudi Arabia or Qatar to act as our intermediaries with the Kuwaitis."

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