Año: Americans in PH safe despite threats, tension from Middle East
MANILA, Philippines — Interior Secretary Eduardo Año on Wednesday assured the public that American nationals are safe in the Philippines despite escalating tensions between the Middle East and the United States.
“Magkakaroon yan ng escalation (There will be an escalation). Ang sabi ng Iranian government (The Iranian government said) they will do a counteraction and will strike US nationals assets. Anywhere, everywhere so pwedeng even American nationals in our country pwedeng maging target ‘yan (they can be a target),” Año said in a press briefing at Camp Crame.
“So mag-profiling kami dito na kung [anong] pwedeng mangyari dito (so we will look into possible threats that could happen here) but really the action is more on in the Middle East particularly Iraq and Iran,” Año added.
Año, who is a retired Armed Forces of the Philippines chief of staff, said profiling meant they will monitor areas and people of interest in the Philippines amid tensions in the Middle East.
Asked if the government can protect US nationals in the Philippines, Año said: “We can secure the areas where Americans are frequenting. Security for the individual is a case to case basis.”
Año also noted that the “action is more in the Middle East,” especially in Iraq and Iran.
He also cited US President Donald Trump’s promise to target 52 sites in Iran if the latter tries to attack Americans held hostage at US Embassy in Tehran.
Previously, the Iranian government also vowed revenge against the US after the latter launched attacks in Iraq that killed Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a top Iranian general.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.