Shutdown will last affect embassies

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The partial shutdown of the United States government will not affect the operations of its embassies around the world unless it drags on, an official of the US Embassy in Manila said.

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The official, who refused to be identified, said the shutdown, the first in 17 years, will make sure to delay its effects on national security.

“And diplomacy is part of national security,” the official said, adding that the essential staff and functions of the embassy will be the last to get affected.

The US government shutdown on Tuesday midnight (US time) amid the disagreements between the ruling Democratic Party and the Republican Party over US President Barack Obama’s mandatory healthcare program or most commonly known as the Obamacare.

The shutdown will affect about 800,000 federal employees, will close national parks and will delay some services.

Initial studies showed that the shutdown will cost the US government some $300 million a day at the start. And without plans to hold negotiations again, the shutdown may result to the first ever default if Congress fails to agree to raise the debt limit after October 17.

Obama has will hold his first State Visit to the Philippines on October 11 and 12. He is set to discuss with President Benigno Aquino 3rd the progress of US-Philippine relations. BERNICE CAMILLE V. BAUZON

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