MANILA -- The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will extend assistance to former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales after she was detained at the Hong Kong airport on Tuesday.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said he has asked DFA Undersecretary Ernesto Abella to provide Morales and her family with assistance.
“We asked the Department of Foreign Affairs, through our Consulate General in Hong Kong, to render full assistance to the former Ombudswoman and her family for their safe and secure return to the Philippines,” said Panelo in a statement.
Panelo noted that the same government assistance shall be given to each and every Filipino in distress abroad, and this is regardless of political persuasion or affinity.
He, however, said the Philippine government will defer to the immigration laws and rules of other countries much as we expect foreign nations to do the same.
Reports said Morales was detained for allegedly being a “security threat” and is now facing deportation.
The former Ombudsman’s lawyer, Anne Marie Corominas, said immigration authorities separated Morales from her family.
On March 13 this year, Morales and former Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario filed a complaint before the International Criminal Court (ICC) insisting Chinese officials be held accountable for crimes against humanity and damage to the environment over China's activities in the disputed waters.
Chinese Ambassador Zhao Jianhua described the case filed by the two former government officials against Chinese President Xi Jinping as a “fabrication”.
President Rodrigo R. Duterte has clarified that his administration has no participation in the said activity. (PNA)