Arroyo: RP-US ‘special ties’ to endure
MANILA, Philippines — President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo congratulated United States president-elect Barack Obama on the eve of his inauguration and expressed hope the “special relationship” between the two countries would continue “unabated.”
Arroyo made special mention of Obama in her speech during the annual Vin d’Honneur for the diplomatic corps in Malacañang on Monday.
“In my conversations with Senator Barack Obama before the elections and president-elect Obama after his election, it was made clear that the special relationship between the US and the Philippines will continue unabated,” she said.
“We look forward to working with the new president and we welcome him to the world stage,” she said.
Arroyo said the ties between Manila and Washington “run deep,” as she noted that two and a half million Americans are of Filipino descent, and Filipino and American forces have been fighting side by side since World War II.
“First of all, let me say how honored we were that President Arroyo dedicated a part of her speech today to congratulating our new president,” US Ambassador Kristie Kenney told reporters on the sidelines of the reception.
“It’s a historic day for America and we’re all thrilled that we celebrate that with Philippine friends, so thank you to all of you, celebrating an extraordinary day for America and a great day for Philippine-American friendship,” she said.
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