Villamor Air Base, Pasay City
April 4, 2012

President Benigno S. Aquino III arrived Wednesday night at the Villamor Air Base in Pasay City aboard a chartered Challenger 350 jet plane from Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where he successfully participated in the 20th summit and 45th anniversary celebration of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

In his arrival statement, the President said he stressed during the summit the need for serious talks among the member-countries in the ASEAN claiming the West Philippine Sea in order to arrive at an agreement among themselves before inviting or hearing suggestions from countries outside ASEAN who have interests in the disputed territory.

“Ang pagbibigay prayoridad sa kapakanan ng mga miyembro ng ASEAN sa halip na sundin ang utos ng iba. Tiwala po tayong ito ang magiging instrument sa pagsusulong ng kapayapaan sa West Philippine Sea, gayunding sa paniniguro na ang karapatan at soberenya ng Pilipinas ay lubos nating napapangalagaan,” he said.

The Chief Executive said the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct (DOC) of Parties in the South China Sea must be firmly recognized and further be strengthened.

He also participated in a dialogue on Disaster Risk Reduction and Management to improve cooperation and volunteerism around the Southeast Asian region every time disaster or calamity strikes.

The President was welcomed by Vice President Jejomar Binay, Ambassador of Cambodia Hos Sereythonh, Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr., other Cabinet members and major service commanders of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

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