Thus, said today by the Filipino migrant rights’ group as it urged Philippine government officials to avoid provocation amid the PH-Taiwan row and while awaiting the result of the parallel but separate investigations by both governments on the Balintang Channel incident that resulted to the killing of a 65-year old Taiwanese fisherman Hung Shih-Cheng on May 9 shooting by the Philippine Coast Guard personnel.

John Leonard Monterona, MIGRANTE sectoral party of OFWs and family vice chairperson, also coordinator in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) said, “Issuing unnecessary remarks against Taiwan that would only provoke the former amid PH-Taiwan row will not help as it will stirs controversies, which will only muddle the issue at hand.”

Days after the Balintang Channel incident, the Taiwan government ordered to freeze the hiring of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and imposed other sanctions after it does not satisfy what it said an‘informal apology for an incident that is officially carried out by PH civil servants’. Report on Taiwan’s freeze order was initially denied but later on was confirmed by the Philippine Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE).

‘Taiwan is at a losing ends if it stop hiring OFWs’, ‘Collapse of Taiwan economy if OFWs leave’, are only some of the unnecessary remarks Monterona cited, ‘though there may be a grain of truth on that remarks’.

Monterona added that such unnecessary remarks are inviting more troubles to OFWs in Taiwan.

Incidents of harassment of Filipino in Taiwan were reported, some have been proven true, some were hoaxes, and some are still unverified. Per news reports, the Taiwan govt. has pledged to protect the well-being of OFWs.

He added that even issuing speculations on the result of the parallel but separate investigation held by both sides won’t help but will only invite more controversies.

“The parallel-but-separate investigations may not be the ideal set up; nonetheless the aim is for both sides to find out what really happened on the Balintang Channel incident. It would be better if both governments agreed to have or allow a third party, such as a respected international human rights body or group, to conduct an independent probe,” Monterona opined.

“In case there is a deadlock or different findings from the investigation held by both sides, the result of the investigation done by the independent third party would be of help to resolve contentious issues,”Monterona lamented.

Incidents of harassment of Filipino in Taiwan were reported, some have been proven true, some were hoaxes, and some are still unverified. Per news reports, the Taiwan govt. has pledged to protect the well-being of OFWs.

There are 85,000 OFWs living and working in Taiwan.