Filipino diplomat hits Thai newspaper headline calling PH ‘Land of COVID-19’

Published August 11, 2020, 8:08 AM

by Noreen Jazul

An official of the Philippine Embassy in Bangkok has expressed “deep dissatisfaction” over a headline of a Thai newspaper which called the Philippines the “Land of COVID-19.”


Consul General Val Simon T. Roque, in his letter to Thai Rath editor-in-chief Khun Saravut, called the newspaper’s “characterization” of the Philippines “inappropriate, insensitive, and unhelpful.”

The Thai Rath article published August 9 reported on the arrival of 165 Filipino teachers in Thailand on Saturday.

The teachers will be designated in private-run schools in Thailand, according to the Bangkok Post.

“The Philippine Embassy wishes to express its deep dissatisfaction over the characterization in the headline of the Philippines in relation to the return of the teachers,” Roque said.

Roque assured Thai Rath and its readers that all the Filipino teachers who arrived in Thailand are “following and will strictly follow all the health protocols and quarantine conditions promulgated by the Royal Thai Government.”

“We, at the Philippine Embassy, can also attest to the diligence and professionalism of Thai civil servants at the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Royal Thai Embassy in Manila, the airports, and the Ministry of Public Health in ensuring that the foregoing protocols and quarantine requirements are stringently followed so that the Kingdom can continue to manage the COVID-19 situation very well,” he added.

Roque also called for “unity and harmony” among Southeast Asian (SEA) nations to “effectively deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.”