Sual Wharf and Causeway, Sual, Pangasinan
November 2, 2016

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte led the ceremonial send-off of 17 Vietnamese fishermen at the Sual Wharf and Causeway in Sual, Pangasinan.

“It’s important to help each other,” President Duterte said, adding that he made a promise to Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang to expedite the departure of the detained Vietnamese fishermen.

He continued by saying that it is the small people who are mostly affected by such issues and that it is important to ease these problems quickly not only to improve international relations, but also for the welfare of the affected people.

The President also spoke about the threat of terrorism in the country and gave a warning about the dangers of illegal drugs, saying, “If I do not interdict now, I would have compromised the next generation… we are near the edge.”

Present during the event were Vietnamese Ambassador to the Philippines Truong Trieu Duong, National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, National Security Adviser (NSA) Hermogenes Esperon, Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Judy Taguiwalo, Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Jaime Morente and the local government officials.

The Philippine Navy detained the 17 Vietnamese fishermen on September 8, 2016 after they were caught poaching in Philippine waters. They were released after the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor of Vigan City, Ilocos Sur dismissed their criminal case, citing that the fishermen reached Philippine territory in order to avoid typhoon Ferdie and the southwest monsoon.

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