Duterte willing to take in Rohingya refugees, urges other ASEAN countries to do the same

Duterte willing to take in Rohingya refugees, urges other ASEAN countries to do the same

Just like his predecessor Commonwealth’s first Philippine President Manuel Quezon who shared the view that the Philippines must do its share in saving the persecuted Jews in Europe, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is opening the country’s borders for the Rohingya refugees.

Duterte reiterated his willingness to accept Rohingya refugees fleeing war and persecution in Myanmar.

“Ako (Me), I am prepared. I have communicated my desire na ‘yung mga Rohingya sa Burma kung gusto nilang mag-migrate, tatanggapin ko sila (I am prepared. I have communicated my desire that if the Rohingya refugees in Burma want to migrate, I will accept them here),” Duterte said in a speech in Cotabato City.
Rohingya refugees experiencing genocide from the Myanmar authorities, inset is PH President Rodrigo Roa Duterte

“Malaki ang lupa natin, kawawa naman ‘yang mga tao doon, ‘yung mga Muslim na… (We have big lands, the people there are pitiful, the Muslims..),” he added.
President Duterte urged neighboring Association South East Asian Nation (ASEAN) countries Malaysia and Indonesia to do the same.
Maghati-hati tayo (Let’s share among us): Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines. Ako (Me) I’m ready to accept,” Duterte said.

The President recalled how the province of Bataan and Palawan welcomed the Vietnamese “boat people” fleeing the Vietnam war between 1975 and 1992.
Nagtanggap man tayo noon ng mga Vietnamese ‘di ba? Panahon ng Amerikano diyan sa Palawan (Didn’t we accept Vietnamese in the past? During the American period there in Palawan),” Duterte said.

Last February, the President  said he is willing to accept Rohingya refugees in the country, believing that genocide is apparently taking place against them in Myanmar.

Early this year (February) the President has slammed the inaction of the United Nations (UN) and the European Union (EU) in addressing their sad plight.

Rohingya, often been described as "the world's most persecuted minority", are an ethnic group, majority of whom are Muslim, who have lived for centuries in Myanmar. Currently, there are about 1.1 million Rohingyas in the Southeast Asian country.

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Report from PNA

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