President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Friday said he was inclined to attend the United Nations General Assembly in September, citing the importance of the event and his desire to meet with other world leaders.
Marcos issued the statement after UN Resident Coordinator to the Philippines Gustavo Gonzalez paid a courtesy call to Marcos at his headquarters in Mandaluyong City to discuss preparations for this year’s UN General Assembly in New York, USA.
In a press briefing after his private meeting with Marcos, Gonzalez said the General Assembly will focus on the impact of COVID-19 on the world.
Marcos told Gonzalez that “it would be very important to attend and represent the Philippines in the General Assembly and meet with other world leaders.”
Apart from Gonzalez, Ambassador of Sweden to the Philippines Annika Thunborg, Ambassador of Holy See Charles Brown, and Ambassador of Ireland William Carlos also met with Marcos separately during a series of meetings Friday morning.
Gonzalez said he discussed three main points of the UN—human rights, peace, and development—with Marcos.
Gonzalez said the President-elect emphasized the need to ensure a “high level of accountability” for human rights violations.
“On human rights, my message was to, first of all, reiterate the support of the United Nations to all the efforts of the Philippines on the human rights agenda,” he said. “He (Marcos) mentioned also the importance of ensuring a high level of accountability in terms of human rights.”
Gonzales said Marcos also said there has been a series of consultations to uphold and protect human rights in the Philippines.
The two also tackled climate change and the impact of natural disasters.
Sweden’s Ambassador Annika Thunborg said they discussed “building back better and greener, more resilient places sustainably and inclusively in light of the global crisis, the pandemic, Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, the climate crisis, and the socio–economic hardship that the world faces.”
“I said that we do hope that the socio-economic and financial reforms that have been put in place during the current government, will continue, with the incoming government,” Thunberg said.
Thunborg said Marcos said he was committed to continuing his predecessor’s anti-drug campaign, “with respect for human rights and focus on rehabilitation.”
OnTuesday Jorge Moragas, Ambassador of Spain to the Philippines, Ambassador Mohammed Rida El Fassi of Morocco, and German Ambassador Anke Reiffenstuel were also received by Marcos separately during a series of meetings.
On Monday, Marcos also met separately with ambassadors from Italy and different ASEAN countries during which they discussed expanded cooperation between the Philippines and their respective countries.