New US envoy in Manila

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Newly designated United States (US) Ambassador to the Philippines Philip Goldberg arrived in Manila on Monday night days after he was sworn in as envoy.

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US President Barack Obama sped up Goldberg’s deployment to the Philippines to augment the global superpower’s relief aid operations for the victims of Super Typhoon Yolanda.

Secretary of State John Kerry administered the swearing-in of the former US assistant secretary for Intelligence and Research at the Benjamin Franklin Room of the State Department in Washington DC on Thursday morning.

The US Senate confirmed the appointment of Goldberg, a veteran career diplomat, on November 14, a month after former US Ambassador to Manila Harry Thomas Jr. officially left the post he held for three years.

“I’m excited and honored to be going to the Philippines, a country with which we share so much history,” Goldberg said. “At the same time, it’s hard to think of the suffering of so many people in the Philippines in recent weeks and all they’ve endured without a touch of sadness and without being moved.”

He said if he has learned one thing from the Filipino friends he has made all around the world, it’s that “they’re warm, tough and resilient.”

“There should be no doubt that they will bounce back,” the former US ambassador to Bolivia said.

Goldberg said the relief and humanitarian efforts highlighted the importance of the relationship between the US and Philippine military.

“The coordination has been outstanding and has saved lives,” Goldberg, a native of Boston, Massachusetts and a graduate of The Rivers School and Boston University, said.

Echoing the declaration of Secretary Kerry that the relationship of the US with the Philippines is “broad-based and deep,” the new ambassador to Manila said he is confident that they will be able to do more.

Bernice Camille V. Bauzon

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