By Prince Golez
President Rodrigo Duterte will side with the Americans if Filipinos in the Middle East are affected negatively by the conflict between the United States and Iran, his spokesman said.
“Hindi tayo magiging neutral. The President was very specific in saying last night that if the Filipinos are harmed, he will side with the Americans,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a media briefing Tuesday.
Duterte had sent Environment Secretary and Special Envoy to the Middle East Roy Cimatu and Presidential Adviser on Overseas Filipino Workers Abdullah Mamao to fly to the Middle East to lay the groundwork for the possible evacuation of Filipinos.
The chief executive also called on the Iranian and Iraqi governments to ensure the safety of overseas Filipino workers in the said countries.
“Kung papatayin ang Filipinos, gusto mong sabihin, hindi na tayo iimik? Eh ang kalaban nila Amerikano. Kaya nila gagawin ‘yun, dahil kakampi tayo ng Amerikano,” Panelo said.