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Palace hails House move to demand return of Balangiga bells

/ 04:41 PM September 28, 2017

The Bells of Balangiga at former base of the 11th Infantry Regiment at F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming.  FILE PHOTO

Malacañang welcomed a resolution by the House of Representatives, seeking the return of the Balangiga bells from the United States (US), reiterating that the bells are “integral to our national heritage.”

In a Palace briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said it is about time that the church bells be returned to the Philippines, as the nation commemorates on Thursday the brave raid of Filipino revolutionaries on American troops in Balangiga, Eastern Samar 116 years ago.

“Today, September 28, the nation remembers the 116th anniversary of the heroism and gallantry of our forebears in the municipality of Balangiga in Eastern Samar. And we also reiterate our call for the rightful returns of the bells to the country,” Abella said.

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On Wednesday, the House of Representatives approved House Resolution No. 337 seeking the return of the Balangiga bells, which were taken by US army during the Philippine-American War in 1901.

“The Balangiga bells are integral to our national heritage and the return of these historical relics is crucial to our collective memory and sense of nationhood,” Abella noted.

President Rodrigo Duterte will lead on Thursday afternoon the commemoration of the 116th Balangiga Encounter Day in Eastern Samar.

Duterte, in his second State of the Nation (Sona) in July, demanded for the return of the Balangiga bells.    /kga

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TAGS: Balangiga bells, church bells, Eastern Samar
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