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Closure of Consular offices not to affect diplomatic ties - Philippine gov't

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The Philippine government assured on Tuesday that the closing down of the country's Consular offices in selected countries will not affect its diplomatic relations with them.

Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda, in a news briefing, said that the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has to shut down some of its offices abroad because of the Aquino government's austerity measures and low activities at these offices.

"There will be no effect, closing down of Consular offices is internal to us, so there is no effect on them (concerned countries) , as long as we have presence there...we have diplomatic relations. The diplomatic relations is not diminished by the cutting down of Consular offices in their countries," he said.

Lacierda made it clear that despite the closure of the Consular offices, the government will still prioritize its efforts on attending to the overseas Filipino workers' (OFW's) concerns in foreign lands, and "we're going to have more mobile consular officials" in areas with a large number of Filipino overseas workers.

The DFA has said that 10 foreign service posts will be closed down this year, which include Philippine Consular Offices in Koror in Palau; Caracas in Venezuela; Barcelona in Spain; Stockholm in Sweden; in Dublin, Ireland; Frankfurt, Germany; Havana, Cuba; Saipan; Bucharest, Romania and Helsinki in Finland.

by: PNA/Xinhua




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