DFA: Envoy speaking in his ‘personal capacity’
BY ASHZEL HACHERO and WENDELL VIGILIA
THE Department of Foreign Affairs yesterday said it “completely dissociates itself” from the controversial remarks of Teodoro Locsin Jr., Malacañang’s special envoy to China, that Palestinian children should be killed.
DFA spokesperson Teresita Daza said the department had nothing to do with Locsin’s now deleted post on X, formerly Twitter.
“Such statement was made in his strictly personal capacity,” Daza told reporters when asked for comment.
In his post Saturday, Locsin, Foreign Affairs chief in the Duterte administration and now ambassador to the United Kingdom, said “Palestinian children should be killed as they might grow up to become as gullible as innocent Palestinians letting Hamas launch rockets at Israel.”
Locsin has apologized and said it was a “sarcastic response” to another post.
Despite this, Locsin received flak from two lawmakers.
Rep. Ron Salo (PL, Kabayan), chair of the House committee on overseas workers affairs, said a high ranking official of the Philippine government “making his provocative personal opinion public by posting it in social media is highly irresponsible.”
“His statement incites hatred and hostility not only against the Palestine people but also against our Muslim brothers and sisters in the Philippines and around the world, a crime in most jurisdictions, and is outlawed by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR),” he said.
Salo also said Locsin’s social media post “may be perceived as the official stand of the Philippine government.”
“Worse, it jeopardizes our Filipino diplomats particularly in the Middle East who may be perceived as sharing his opinion. Worst, it endangers the lives of our already vulnerable kababayans (countrymen) scattered all over the world, mostly concentrated in Muslim countries, which do not share the ambassador’s sarcasm, no matter how witty or amusing he thinks he appears,” he said.
Lanao del Sur Rep. Zia Alonto Adiong said, “There is no room in Philippine society, much more in the high offices of government, for the dangerous, bigoted, and Islamophobic rhetoric that is palpable in your now deleted statement.”
“Under no circumstance is the