‘Two-track’ system of negotiations PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 15 August 2016 14:26

Sound Snipes

BY Jimmy Cabato

Having written yesterday on reservations over possibilities of supposed plagiarism, WS corrects own self,  and writes this addendum.

The main point in  tagging some items with initials is simply to give credit to where credit is due, and that is to the news sources - the reporter/writers and the feeding paper. Possibilities of supposed plagiarism erringly made. Mea culpa. Their writeups can never be plagiarized. The phrases upon phrases lifted from the sources are plain and simple straight reporting. No opinions expressed. Therefore, use of the phrases is not an act of arrogating to one‘s self the thinking line of others. The borrowed works are simply meant to dish out facts as reported. Still and all, however - to WSS - their contributions definitely deserve credit. Hence, the identities of the news sources. Sorry for the slip. Mea maxima culpa.

* * * *

The Philippines and China jointly planning for what is described as a “two-track” system of negotiations. The scheme will allow the two nations to cooperate in some areas while separately handling “contentious issues” such as the South China Sea (West Philippine Sea, to us) territorial dispute. This was disclosed by a Manila envoy on Saturday.

Former president Fidel Ramos and former Interior secretary Rafael Alunan discussed the proposal at meetings with Chinese representatives in Hong Kong on a trip aimed at improving relations.

Ramos, a longtime advocate of closer ties, said the talks were “very hospitable… very encouraging, in the sense that we have a common interest” in such goals as fighting global warming.

They met with Fu Ying, chair of the foreign affairs committee of the National People’s Congress, China’s communist-controlled legislature.

Alunan said both sides discussed... “think-tank exchanges”  He explained, that would relieve them the burden of discussing contentious issues because there is another group discussing it. In the meantime, efforts will be exerted to explore ways and means on how to move relations forward between the contending parties, he told reporters.

When asked if they discussed a UN-backed tribunal’s ruling last month that Beijing’s claims over most of the South China Sea were invalid, Ramos said “we never mentioned that.”

The decision by the Permanent Court of Arbitration was widely seen as a victory for the Philippines which has challenged China’s claims to the vital waterway.

China refused to recognize the decision and had demanded that the Philippines disregard it in future talks. The Philippines rejected this.

Ramos and Alunan stressed that they were only informal envoys and that further formal talks will be handled by other parties.

However, both Ramos and Alunan said the Chinese side made no commitments and merely noted their proposals.

While the territorial dispute has strained ties, President Rodrigo Duterte has previously said he will seek Chinese help for vital infrastructure projects. (TMT-fed)

* * * *

In what is seen as a changing of the guard that left swimming icon Michael Phelps totally at peace, the latter was beaten Friday by a 21-year-old who grew up idolizing the most decorated athlete in Olympic history. Joseph Schooling of Singapore built a big lead in the 100-meter butterfly and easily held off one of Phelps’ patented comebacks, leaving him at 22 gold medals with one race, a relay, left to go.

And this is where now Sen. Manny Pacquiao should look up to as a lesson.

Phelps declared that this year’s Olympics will be his final event. Phelps insisted… No more comebacks.

“I’m not going four more years and I’m standing by that,” he said. “I’ve been able to do everything I’ve ever put my mind to in the sport and after 24 years in the sport, I’m happy with how things finished.”

After the 2012 London Games he did announce retirement but jumped into training one year later.

But this time as reported, the big hug Phelps gave Schooling and the huge smile when it was done told a different story this time. He is reporting.

Manny should take from there. Fame or shame?

* * * *

This is how imperiled the nation seems now due to illegal drugs.

At least a million worth of cash, several packs of shabu that weighed more than a kilo, nubain, and other contrabands were seized in a surprise raid at the Cebu City Jail and the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC)  past midnight Saturday.

Nubain (nalbuphine hydrochloride) is an opioid used to treat moderate to severe pain.

Recall, that in nearby jails in the peninsula here also yielded similar items. (MB)

* * * *

In the face of intensified anti-illegal drug campaigns, the number of crime incidence recorded as of last month across the country dropped by about 49 percent compared to last year. Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa made the announcement Friday.

“This only goes to show that most of these crimes that are happening in our communities are drug-related. That’s why when we focused our resources and attention on the drug problem, crimes also dropped,” Dela Rosa said in a speech before hundreds of police officers at the police regional headquarters at Camp Alagar, Northern Mindanao.

“This campaign is just starting,” Dela Rosa said. Despite criticism from various sectors, there would be no letup in the PNP’s tough approach to fighting illegal drugs, he stressed

Most of the prevalent crimes were usually drug-related such as theft, robbery, domestic violence, rape and all forms of abuse.

“Let us continue with our campaign as long as what we are doing is in compliance with the law and respect for human rights,” he said.

Really? Ho-o ya lang. (Like it or nor, yes.)

* * * *

The Philippines could be facing greater problems in three to seven years from now. President Duterte issued this warning as he disclosed Wednesday that the Islamic State terrorist indoctrination process has already begun in Mindanao.

Duterte’s remarks came a day after officials of the Department of Tourism confirmed that an IS-related group is planning to bomb the Miss Universe beauty contest to be held in the Philippines next year, describing the threat as “serious.”

Filipino Muslim militants operating in Mindanao have in recent years pledged allegiance to IS, though security officials and analysts said they were more focused on raising ransom from kidnappings than propagating an ideology.

He said the problem should be addressed before Mindanao gets contaminated with the “ISIS disease.”

“There’s something wrong with their minds–killing people unnecessarily, with no rhyme nor reason,” Duterte said.

To think that former Pres. BS Aquino always played down such reports as hearsay!

Such absurdity. Unsound act. Pervert-minded.

* * * *

“What happened in Mindanao, (it) was a question of greed” Thus spoke Pres. Duterte, at last breaking his silence on the Mamasapano massacre.

Duterte brazenly blamed the Mamasapano carnage in 2015 to the greediness of some officials who were running after the $5-million bounty for the head of Malaysian terrorist Zulkifli bin Hir, alias Marwan.