[PHOTO AT LEFT - Incoming president Sen. Benigno Aquino III poses with European diplomats following a meeting at the Aquino residence in Quezon City yesterday. Photo shows (from left, front) German Ambassador Christian Ludwig Weber-Lortsch, British Ambassador Stephen Lillie, European Union Ambassador Alistair MacDonald, Aquino, Greek Ambassador Xenia Stefanidou, Spanish Ambassador Jose Luiz Arias Romero, French Deputy Chief of Mission Didier Ortolland. Seen standing behind them are Deputy Chief of Mission Anita van de Haar-Conijn of the Netherlands, Belgian Chief of Mission René Peeters and Italian Ambassador Luca Fornari. JONJON VICENCIO]

MANILA , JUNE 1, 2010 (STAR) Shrugging off threats of possible lawsuits, 13 European envoys led by European Union (EU) Ambassador Alistair MacDonald congratulated yesterday incoming president Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III ahead of his proclamation and vowed support for his administration, particularly in achieving peace and development in Mindanao.

MacDonald said “even while the process of proclamation as laid down in the Philippine Constitution is still underway, we were delighted to be able to congratulate Senator Aquino on his outstanding performance in these first automated elections, which have been widely considered both in Philippines and the international community to be a remarkable success.”

He added they wanted to hear from Aquino how he felt the EU and member states might be able to work with his administration to help strengthen Philippine-EU relations and support the reform agenda of the incoming administration.

MacDonald noted that all the 12 EU diplomatic missions in Manila took part in the call on Aquino.

In the meeting were Ambassadors Wilhelm Donko of Austria, Josef Rychtar of the Czech Republic, Heikki Hannikainen of Finland, Christian-Ludwig Weber-Lortsch of Germany, Xenia Stefanidou of Greece, Luca Fornari of Italy, Valeriu Gheorghe of Romania, Luis Arias Romero of Spain, Stephen Lillie of the United Kingdom, and MacDonald.

They were with their delegates Deputy Heads of Mission René Peeters (Belgium), Didier Ortolland (France) and Anita van de Haar-Conijn (The Netherlands).

Aquino said despite allegations of fraud and irregularities, foreign observers could attest that the conduct of the elections had been successful.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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