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PIA Press Release
2009/02/10

RP-US relations seen stronger under Obama Administration, US State Sec Clinton assures PGMA

Tacloban City (February 10) -- United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton assured President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo that the good relations between the Philippines and the United States will be strengthened and deepened under the Administration of US President Barrack Obama.

The commitment was pronounced during the 30-minute meeting between President Arroyo and Secretary Clinton at the Treaty Room of the US State Department which capped the President's working visit to the US Capital recently.

The US State Department website posted an excerpts of the remarks between the two women leaders before their meeting.

Secretary Clinton said that the "Philippines is one of our closest and most important allies, not just in Asia, but on so many issues around the world. And we are very proud of the role and contributions that Filipino Americans have played in the United States over many years."

For her part, President Arroyo said, "I am very happy to be here to congratulate you on your appointment and your love-fest of a confirmation. As you said, the Filipino-Americans have played a very important role here, but another important thing is they all love you, both the Filipino Americans and the Filipinos in the Philippines. So we're so proud of you."

The February 6 meeting was described as "more than just a social meeting" as the two women of substance discussed many issues besetting the Philippines, among which are the Mindanao peace process and how the Philippines is coping well with the present global economic crisis.

President Arroyo invited the Secretary of State to visit the Philippines. Secretary Clinton accepted the invitation and promised to check her schedule.

Secretary Clinton, it was learned, is scheduled to visit Asia, specially China, Japan and Malaysia, for the first time as Secretary of State, in the next two weeks.

The President, who left the country January 30, flew in to Washington, D.C. on February 5, the last leg of her overseas trip after attending the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland; and brief visits to Milan, Italy; Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, and Bahrain, in order to attend the National Prayer Breakfast Meeting.

Aside from the meeting with Secretary Clinton, President Arroyo also met with four leading US legislators, Senators John Kerry (D-Massachusetts), chairman of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee; Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii), chairman of the US Senate Veterans' Affairs committee; and Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), chairman of the US Senate Appropriations Committee and a staunch supporter of Filipino veterans of World War II. (PIA 8) [top]

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