PH, France mark 75th year of diplomatic ties; ‘Friendship Park’ inaugurated

Published June 26, 2022, 4:53 PM

by Raymund Antonio

The Philippines and France celebrated the 75th anniversary of their diplomatic ties on Sunday, June 26, by opening the France-Philippines Friendship Park at the Las Piñas-Parañaque Wetland Park.

French Ambassador to the Philippines Michele Boccoz speaks during the inauguration of France-Philippines Friendship Park on Sunday, June 26. (Photo from the French Embassy via Twitter)

This year also marked the 30th anniversary of the Together Ensemble Foundation.

French Ambassador to Manila Michèle Boccoz said it was an honor for her that she’s the country’s envoy to the Philippines to witness this celebration.

“We are united by common values that form the foundation of the (France and Philippine flag emojis) partnership. This day is an occasion to reflect on the past, present and future of our friendship,” she posted on Twitter.

Visiting French Senator Samantha Cazebonne, Senator Cynthia Villar, Environment Assistant Secretary Gilbert Gonzales, and Together-Ensemble President Hubert d’Aboville were also in the inauguration of the friendship park.

“It is truly an honor for me to be posted in the Philippines to witness this new chapter in our countries’ shared history,” Boccoz said.

“Although we find ourselves on different sides of the globe, we are united by common values that form the foundation of the franco-philippine partnership. This day is therefore an occasion to reflect on the past, present, and future of our friendship,” she added.

(Photo by Noel Pabalete/MANILA BULLETIN)

In a video posted by the French Embassy in Manila on its official Twitter account, Boccoz and Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. were seen sharing a toast to commemorate the occasion.

“It has been 75 years. Those are diplomatic relations. It actually goes much farther than that,” Locsin said in the one-minute video.

Boccoz agreed, saying that “our relationship is much older” although the treaty was signed in 1947.

“More than a century before that, our heroes studied in Paris, our heroes lived in Paris…It really shaped how their vision for what our country would be,” Locsin said, while the French envoy added that her country is looking forward to the next 75 years.

During the ceremony, the statue “Intertwined”, an interpretation of the Gallic Rooster and the Philippine Eagle, was unveiled.

The statue symbolizes the friendship between the two countries and the commitment to protect the environment.