Drilon urges DFA to revise VFA | Inquirer News
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Drilon urges DFA to revise VFA

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 11:08 AM December 18, 2014
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Senate President Franklin Drilon. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – Senate President Franklin Drilon called on the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Thursday to initiate a review of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) between the Philippines and the United States to revise its provisions on the detention and custody of a person accused in a foreign land.

Drilon made the call after the US refused to hand over to Philippine authorities Pfc. Joseph Scott Pemberton, who has been charged with the murder of Filipino transgender Jeffrey “Jennifer” Laude.

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“Ako ay nalulungkot sa posisyon ng Amerika. Masyadong teknikal ang kanilang interpretasyon ng Visiting Forces Agreement,” the Senate president said over radio dzRH. (I am saddened with the position of the US. Their interpretation of the VFA is very technical.)

“Ang hiniling ng pamilya nung namatay nating kababayan ay hindi po kinonsidera,” Drilon added. (They did not consider the request of the victim’s family.)

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Subsequently, Drilon pushed for a review of the VFA.

“The Philippines must initiate a request of the review of the Visiting Forces Agreement dahil na rin sa mga nangyayari na ito, at umpisahan na ang negosasyon,” Drilon said. (The Philippines must initiate a request of the review of the Visiting Forces Agreement because of this development, so that we can start the negotiation.)

“Aking hinihiling na baguhin itong mga probisyon tungkol sa detention at custody dahil iyan ay hindi sangayon sa Revised Penal Code, at sa ating Rules of Procedure,” he said. (I’m proposing changing the provisions on detention and custody because these do not conform to the Revised Penal Code and our Rules of Procedure)

The Senate only ratifies treaties. It does not review or revise them, Drilon explained.

RELATED STORIES

US rejects PH demand for custody of Pemberton

PH-US tug of war over Pemberton heats up

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TAGS: case, custody, detention, DFA, Franklin Drilon, Jeffrey "Jennifer" Laude, Joseph Scott Pemberton, Murder, Philippines, Review, Senate, US, VFA
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