FOREIGN Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano advised Filipinos in war-threatened countries to stay calm and go on with their daily lives as he assured them that embassies concerned have prepared their respective contingency plans in cases where situation could deteriorate.
At the same time Cayetano said the Philippines, as head of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), was ready to play a role in the peaceful resolution of the crisis in the Korean peninsula.
Cayetano said instructions have been given to embassy officials in Korea, Japan and Guam for them to regularly provide updates, though social media, to Filipinos on preparations and other related matters they needed to know.
“Of course all of us are hoping that this is just harsh rhetoric but as I’ve said we can’t risk it and I asked also our posts to articulate the contingency plans so Filipinos abroad will know what to do,” Cayetano said in an interview with reporters.
The most important thing, Cayetano added, would be that at the start of a crisis, Filipinos would know who to talk to, where to go and how to communicate.
Meanwhile, the Philippines’ top diplomat has urged all sides to do everything in keeping the door of dialogue open and prevent the situation from deteriorating.
”Both sides are talking about security, national security but there will be no national security if there’s a nuclear war,” Cayetano said.
Tensions are high between the United States and North Korea following reports about Pyongyang’s plan to fire four missiles near the territorial waters of Guam.
The move has been seen as Pyongyang’s response to a statement by US President Donald Trump that if it carried out its plan, North Korea would be facing “fire and fury like the world has never seen.”