MANILA, Philippines – Following the recent summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) offered its help to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) to improve ties between the Philippines and North Korea.
In a statement on Saturday, June 16, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, who is PDP-Laban national vice chairman, said that as part of the country's independent foreign policy, "the Philippines should not hesitate to reframe our relations with countries that we have not significantly engaged with in the past."
"PDP Laban is ready to do its part to facilitate closer ties with the DPRK (Democratic People's Republic of Korea)," said Cusi.
"The PDP-Laban delegation is charged with the task of forging closer party-to-party and people-to-people ties between our two countries. We offer to the DFA our services to help establish more formal relations between our governments," he added.
Cusi said the ruling party will send a delegation to Pyongyang "to meet with their counterparts from the Workers' Party of Korea," the ruling party in North Korea.
The delegation will be headed by Presidential Adviser for Northern Luzon Raul Lambino, PDP-Laban vice president for international affairs, said Cusi.
The party noted that it had earlier established formal ties with the Communist Party of China and United Russia.
In February 2017, PDP-Laban signed a memorandum of understanding with China's ruling party. (READ: Pimentel: Nothing wrong with PDP-Laban ties with China's Communist Party)
In October 2017, PDP-Laban signed a 5-year memorandum of understanding with United Russia, the political party of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The Philippines and North Korea established diplomatic relations on July 12, 2000. – Rappler.com