Mar 042013


DFA spokesman Assistant Secretary Raul Hernandez. FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippines has asked the Malaysian government to exercise maximum tolerance in dealing with members of the Sultanate of Sulu’s “Royal Army” that figured in a weeks-long standoff in Sabah that turned violent last week.

Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Spokesman Raul Hernandez told reporters Monday that Secretary Albert Del Rosario had met anew with Malaysian Ambassador Mohammad Zamri bin Mohammad Kassim and had handed over a note verbale.

“The note verbale states that the governments of the Philippines and Malaysia both value the lives of their citizens and share the same objective of preventing further loss of lives and further bloodshed,” Hernandez said

“In this light the Philippine government has called on the forces of the royal sultanate of Sulu led by Rajah Muda Agbimuddin Kiram to surrender peacefully,” he added.

Hernandez said Del Rosario was set to fly to Kuala Lumpur to personally hand over the requests of the Philippine government to his counterpart in Malaysia, Foreign Minister Anifah Aman.

The Philippines was requesting clearance to allow a Philippine Navy ship to dock and bring humanitarian and consular aid to Filipinos.

He also reiterated the Philippines’ request for a full briefing on the operations carried out by Malaysian authorities against Kiram’s group.

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