SECRETARY of Foreign Affairs (SFA) Teodoro L. Locsin Jr. highlighted the peace and freedom that the Philippines gained with the help of the United States, which the former used to rebuild and secure its future out of the ashes of World War II 75 years ago.
Speaking before audiences in Manila and Baguio City and simultaneously linked together in one online event, Locsin joined Defense Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana, Ambassador of the US Sung Y. Kim and Ambassador of Japan Koji Haneda to reflect on the end of the bloodiest war in history and the value of having strong allies, partners and friends among nations, especially at this time when the entire world struggles with a pandemic.
Special guests at the in-person but socially distanced event hosted by Deputy Chief of Mission John Law in the chancery of the US Embassy included Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso and Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Maria Lumen B. Isleta.
The program likewise saw a presentation by Professor Charita de los Reyes on the history and significance of Baguio City, where World War II in the Philippines began and ended with the signing of surrender documents by General Tomoyuki Yamashita in Camp John Hay on September 3, 1945, as well as a virtual walk-through of the war photos exhibited at Fort Santiago in Intramuros, Manila.
In closing, the SFA emphasized the peace that ensued after the war has been crucial to the Philippines’s present and future: “That future of peace and freedom is our present; and we guard it fiercely and without compromise; so that we and those who come after us shall ever live with the fullest reality and the most certain promise of peace and harmony without end.”
Full text of Locsin’s speech may be sourced from dfa.gov.ph. DFA
Image credits: US Embassy, DFA