PH calls for 'maximum restraint' in Crimea
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines on Tuesday, March 18, said it “remains deeply concerned” after Crimea voted to join Russia, its former political master, and broke away from Ukraine.
In a statement, the Philippines' Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) also said it “hopes for a diplomatic solution” to this issue.
“We support actions toward de-escalating tensions in the region and for comprehensive, inclusive, and peaceful dialogue and reconciliation, with full respect for the rule of law, to be pursued by all parties,” the DFA said.
It added that the Philippines “takes note” of United Nations (UN) General Assembly Resolution 3314. The country also “calls for maximum restraint to be shown by all parties.”
Under UN General Assembly Resolution 3314, aggression is defined as “the use of armed force by a state against the sovereignty, territorial integrity, or political independence of another state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Charter of the United Nations, as set out in this definition.”
The DFA issued the statement after Crimeans voted overwhelmingly to join Russia on Sunday. The vote came as tensions soared in the east of the splintered ex-Soviet nation, the epicenter of the worst East-West crisis since the Cold War.
PH vows assistance
On Monday, March 17, the DFA and the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) assured Filipinos in Ukraine that the Philippine government will assist them.
A DFA-DOLE team met on Sunday, March 16, with more than 40 Filipinos based in Ukraine.
The team advised the Filipinos to prepare for contingencies, and to always get in touch with the Philippine embassy. The Filipinos assured the ambassador of “their full cooperation,” the DFA said in another statement.
Up to 198 Filipinos live in Ukraine.
The situation in Ukraine worsened on Monday after Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree recognizing Crimea as an independent state.
The United States and Europe announced sanctions in relation to this. The White House said the measures, the toughest against Russia since the Cold War, would target economic power brokers in Moscow if the Kremlin does not change course – with reports from Agence France-Presse/Rappler.com