PALACE  CALLS  ON  MEDIA  TO  OBSERVE  RESTRAINT  ON  NAYAN'S  CASE

MALACANANG,  November 2, 2004
(OFFICE OF  THE PRESS SECRETARY)
The government is asking the media to observe restraint on information in the case of the abduction of Angelito Nayan, a Filipino diplomat and United Nations volunteer worker in Afghanistan.

In a briefing in Malacanang this afternoon, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo also said the government is taking all appropriate measures to bring Angelito home.

"This makes our unity and solidarity behind the actions of government imperative even as we impose a restraint on information in order to avoid controversies that would prejudice the safety of Angelito," the President said. "We need to forge broad support for the restraint of information that we are imposing."

The President said the government is coordinating with the UN and, in fact, she said, she had just talked with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan over the phone.

"I ask our people for forbearance we shall keep Angelito’s family informed of developments and hope," the President said.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo, in a separate statement, said the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) is imposing a restraint on information on the matter to assure Nayan’s safety and security to the fullest extent possible.

"From the start, nothing has been spared to ensure Nayan’s safety," Romulo assured the nation.

Ambassador to Pakistan and Afghanistan Jorge Arizabal, Romulo said, is now in close contact with all persons, institutions and organizations that may be able to help the government meet its objectives.

"We are also maintaining 24-four hour coordination with the UN authorities both in Manila and New York," Romulo said.

Meanwhile, Nayan’s family is appraised of development as it arises. Likewise, congressional leaders will be briefed on the situation.

"We are at a crucial junction in the saga and I ask and I plea for public understanding for the restraint on information we are imposing," Romulo said.

Statement of the President: On Angelito Nayan

The abduction of Angelito Nayan, who is a UN volunteer, has been handled commendably so far by the DFA. Yet, we reached a point where broader support is needed to uphold the common interest. We’re taking all appropriate measures to bring Angelito home. This makes our unity and solidarity behind the actions of government imperative, even us we impose our restraint on information in order to avoid controversies that could prejudice the safety of Angelito. We need to forge broad support for the restraint on information that we were imposing.

Meanwhile, we are closely coordinating with the United Nations. In fact, I was on the phone with (UN Secretary General) Kofi Annan this morning.

I asked our people for forbearance. We shall keep Angelito’s family informed of developments and hope for the best.

God bless us all.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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