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Former WWII comfort women ask Duterte to raise their plight with Japan’s Abe

By Xinhua MANILA -- Filipino "comfort women" urged President Rodrigo Duterte to raise their plight in his meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. "At least mention the comfort women," said Rechilda Extremadura, executive director of Lila Pilipina, an organization of World War II comfort women. She lamented that the previous Philippine administrations have ignored the plight of the Filipino women who were forced to work in Japanese military brothels during World War II in talks with Japanese government. "Our previous leaders have failed us because they are all afraid of rumpling feathers of diplomacy with Japan. With President Duterte, who we believe is no pushover, we are hopeful that finally the issue will be placed in the agenda, at the very least," she said in a statement. Extremadura said Duterte, who is pursuing an …

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Ombudsman gets P7-M UK aid to continue anti-graft drive

The British government has extended anew its financial aid to the Office of the Ombudsman (OMB) to support the latter's anti-corruption drive to help spur the economic and social development of the country. British Ambassador to Manila Asif Ahmad and Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales have signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) extending the assistance of Great Britain in the training OMB prosecutors in the gathering of evidence and prosecution of grafters in the government service. For this year, Ahmad said some P6.7 million in grant has been set aside for the OMB in a program dubbed as "Cultivating Accountability Toward National Growth and Empowerment Project." The British envoy said the project has been going on since 2011 and renewed every year to promote the rule of law and democracy, adding "no one is …

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Poll shows young Americans across racial lines going for Clinton

Washington, DC, United States – Young Americans across races and ethnicities are now more likely to support Hillary Clinton than Donald Trump for president, and to say the former secretary of state will help people like them, a new GenForward poll shows. Clinton’s largest advantage is among young African-Americans, Latinos, and Asian-Americans, but the survey also shows a shift to her among young whites in the last month. GenForward is a survey of adults age 18 to 30 by the Black Youth Project at the University of Chicago with the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The first-of-its-kind poll is designed to pay special attention to the voices of young adults of color, highlighting how race and ethnicity shape the opinions of a new generation. The poll also shows that young people …

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Briones rejects donations sourced from gambling

 No to PAGCOR funds. This was the sentiment expressed by Education Secretary Leonor Briones, declaring that money sourced from gambling is “anti-developmental.” Briones said the Department of Education (DepEd) will no longer be accepting donations sourced from gambling and related activities to fund programs for public schools. The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR) is among the biggest donors of DepEd– particularly in funding classroom construction for public schools nationwide. “I have always been against gambling as a source of funding for development, Briones, a public finance expert, said. She justified her position by declaring that while “you tell your people to be thrifty, to plan and to budget but you’re also telling them to take a chance.” Under her term, Briones said DepEd will no longer be accepting donations  from the state-run agency but will …

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Importance of enhanced diplomatic ties among neighboring nations cited

Tokyo, Japan – Improvement in diplomatic relations among “neighboring nations” is desirable in principle. Japan’s Asahi Shimbun newspaper stressed this in the wake of President Duterte’s pivot to China. “But if they disrespect the rule of law for the sake of narrow bilateral interest, that would be a grave concern for the Asian region,” the Japanese newspaper said in a Saturday editorial, referring to Duterte’s Beijing visit. After the China trip, President Duterte is taking his diplomatic road show to Japan. Duterte told Japanese public broadcaster NHK that his talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will center on economic cooperation and “shared interest” in an interview ahead of his three-day visit. “Now the most important thing there is the shared interest... it’s about the South China Sea,” he said. Duterte has made a habit of …

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Lady military pilot commands C-130 transpacific flight

The latest acquisition of the Philippine Air Force – a C-130T cargo plane made its transpacific flight from Tucson, Arizona under the command of a female military pilot, a first in the history of the Philippine military. “Actually I’m not the first (female) pilot to fly a C-130 plane but I’m the first to be certified as pilot in command. Of course it’s flattering that the command allowed it. There is no restriction for females for as long as you are qualified,” Air Force Maj. Marjorie D. Mukay. She thanked the Philippine Air Force (PAF) leadership for making her a part of the team which brought the aircraft to Manila. The PAF flight crew was headed by Lt. Col. Jason Rom J. Lacida.  Assisting him in operating the aircraft were  Major Anthony Amora, …

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PH will recover if you leave – Duterte

Tokyo, Japan – President Duterte on Tuesday urged foreign businesses in the Philippines worried about his deadly drug war to “pack up and leave,”, as he launched another anti-American tirade before flying to Japan to attract investments. Duterte voiced outrage at comments the previous day by the top US envoy to Asia that his fiery rhetoric and crime war, which has claimed about 3,700 lives in four months, were bad for business. “These Americans are really crazy. Their style is to walk here. They think they are somebodies,”’ Duterte said holding up a newspaper with headlines reporting the criticism from US assistant secretary of state Daniel Russel. “Russel says ‘Duterte comments causing worries in business communities.’ Then you pack up and leave. We will recover, I assure you.” Duterte then flew to Japan, one …

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‘I go to Japan with full trust’

President Duterte flew to Japan yesterday for a three-day official visit aimed at deepening and broadening the country’s ties with its top trading partner and one of its valued strategic allies. “I go to Japan with full trust that we can understand each other and Japan will understand my position vis-à-vis with the foreign policy that I want to implement. It’s just a question of a policy that is really truly Filipino,” the Chief Executive said in a press briefing before his departure for Tokyo. He described Japan as one of the Philippines’ “true friends.” “With Japan as the Philippines’ top trading partner, I shall seek the sustainment and further enhancement of our important economic ties. I look forward to meeting business leaders in Japan. I will tell them clearly that the …

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US wants to deter influence of Russia, China in Asia Pacific

By (PNA/Itar-TASS) Pyongyang– The United States wants to achieve military supremacy in the Asia Pacific Region to "deter Russia and China," Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said in a statement published in the Rodong Sinmun newspaper on Tuesday. In order to fulfill its strategic tasks, US "actively works on creating a trilateral military alliance in Northeast Asia, together with Japan and South Korea" under the pretext of countering the North Korean nuclear missile threat. At the same time, the alliance, described by KCNA as "the Asian version of NATO," is already taking shape. For instance, maneuvers with participation of military ships, helicopters and aircraft of the three countries were recently held near the South Korean island of Jeju. KCNA warns that expansion of trilateral military cooperation between US, Japan and South Korea in Northeast Asia …

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China-PH partnership versus drugs taking shape

Top anti-narcotics officials in Fujian, China will be arriving in the Philippines to discuss with their police counterparts measures on how to contain the movement of Chinese drug lords supplying illegal drugs in the country. Director-General Ronald dela Rosa, chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), said the reason why Chinese anti-narcotics officials are all coming from Fujian province is that most of the drug lords supplying illegal drugs and setting up shabu laboratories in the Philippines come from that Chinese province. In fact, he said the two suspected Chinese operators of a dismantled shabu laboratory in Cauayan City in Isabela who were killed in police operations on Sunday were both from Fujian.

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