The ambassadors of France and Qatar have pledged their support and assistance to the Department of the Interior and Local Government’s (DILG) disaster management and peace and order initiatives, including its anti-illegal drugs campaign.
DILG Secretary Ismael Sueno on Monday said the two ambassadors had paid him a courtesy visit to express their countries’ willingness to support the national government’s high-impact programs that benefit the people.
“I am very pleased that many countries have come forward to help the Philippines realize the much needed change and reforms in our country. This manifestation of support strengthens our resolve to carry on with our mandate of ridding this country of illegal drugs with stronger passion and commitment,” he added.
In the interest of enhancing cooperation between the Philippines and Qatar, Ambassador Ali Ibrahim Malki expressed the intention of the Qatari government to extend assistance to the anti-drug campaign of the government that is being spearheaded by the DILG.
Malki said Qatar is willing to extend a hand in the all-out war of the Philippine government against the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG), noting the recent Davao City bombing that killed 14 people and wounded 71 innocent civilians.
The Qatari ambassador added that Qatar is also interested in helping forge a peace deal between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
Meanwhile, Ambassador Thierry Mathou, accompanied by French Counsellor for Political Affairs Christine Carole and interpreter Christophe Blanchot, visited Sueno at the DILG-Napolcom Center on Edsa in Quezon City.
Mathou told the DILG chief of the French government’s proposal to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on disaster risk management, as well as in the improvement and training of barangay (village) volunteers for the MASA-MASID project, which can be tapped in the illegal drugs clean-up drive, street beautification and segregation of waste materials.
He said the French government is willing to extend technical and financial assistance of 5 million euro to the DILG for projects that the department deems high-priority, necessary and beneficial to the interest of the Filipino people.