PH looks to strengthened US ties with new State Secretary

MANILA The Philippine government has congratulated Michael "Mike" Pompeo, director of the Central Intelligence Agency, on his designation as the new Secretary of State after Rex Tillerson was relieved from his duty as the United States' top diplomat.

"We look forward to working with him and further strengthening the special relationship between the Philippines and the United States," Department of Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said in a statement.

"We are confident of more cooperation and collaboration with Washington with Secretary-designate Pompeo at the helm of the Department of State," he added.

During Tillerson's trip to Manila in August 2017, President Rodrigo R. Duterte welcomed him and presented himself as Washington's "humble friend in Southeast Asia."

Cayetano said Tillerson is a good friend of the Philippines and had played a "crucial role" in strengthening Manila's relations with Washington during his term as Secretary of State.

"We thank Secretary Tillerson for his friendship and the support he has extended to the Philippines and the Filipino people particularly during the period when our relations with the United States were facing challenges," he stressed.

"We pray for the best for Secretary Tillerson in all his future endeavors," he added.

According to reports, US President Donald Trump announced on Twitter Pompeo's designation as State Secretary.

Source: Philippine News Agency

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