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Villar: Duterte doesn’t want a war with China over boat sinking

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By Tara Yap

CABATUAN, Iloilo—While the Philippines has filed a diplomatic protest against China for the sinking of a Filipino fishing boat, Senator Cynthia Villar believes that President Duterte does not want to escalate tensions.

Senator Cynthia Villar (Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

Senator Cynthia Villar
(Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

“Of course, we want to protect our fishermen at the West Philippine Sea and we will support any move to protect them,” said Villar while in Iloilo province.

“Ang ayaw lang ni President ay tayo ang magkakaroon ng war tungkol doon (What the President does not want is that we will get into war because of the incident),” Villar added.

This as Duterte remains mum on the incident that happened days before the country celebrated its 121st Independence Day and endangered the lives of 22 fishermen.

Villar’s statement was more cautious in comparison to the statements made by fellow Senators Panfilo Lacson, Francis Pangilinan, Franklin Drilon, and Risa Hontiveros.

Villar was in Iloilo to administer the oath of her political allies.  Along with Iloilo City Mayor Jose Espinosa III, she administered the oath of reelected Councilors Ed Peñaredondo, Candice Tupas, Lyndon Acap, and Mandrie Malaboar.

Villar also administered the oath of reelected Iloilo Vice Governor Christine Garin and several elected members of the Iloilo Provincial Board including Val Serag, Rolito Cajilig, Rolando Distura, Domingo Oso Jr., Carol V Espinosa, and Darl Tupas.

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