896.001 Quirino/8–849: Telegram

The Chargé in the Philippines (Lockett) to the Secretary of State

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1916. Ref Deptel 941, August 7.1 According Malacanan press office, following is statement made August 6 by President Quirino at Manila airport before emplaning for United States:2

“I wish to thank you all for seeing me off. I am going to Washington officially as President of the Philippines. I shall be received there in that capacity. The name Elpidio Quirino is only incidental to official title. I have a delicate mission to perform. Its significance and importance to the welfare and stability of our country and people and to the relations between the Philippines and the United States are far-reaching. I must make it plain that I am not going merely to ask or beg. In honor and dignity as befits our sovereign status, I will, as your spokesman, convey your message of good-will and gratitude to the American people.

There are many spiritual and moral ties that bind us to America. It is necessary that we cultivate them. This is part of my mission. This is not a political junket. At this juncture in our history, it is imperative that your President should make this trip. While I am away, may I plead to all and sundry to hold your peace and maintain your serenity and calm. Above all, I wish you all to forget that I am a candidate. You can say what you please on that score when I come back.

I ask you to leave aside for the moment our partisan political differences and help me concentrate on the interest of our country while abroad. I rely on the high minded loyalty and devotion of every [Page 597]Filipino, to his homeland and people, to cooperate and to wish success to our mission. If you cannot pray for my personal safety, please pray at least for the safety of our national interests which I carry deep in my heart.

God keep our people.

Until we meet again, mabuhay.”

Lockett
  1. Not printed.
  2. For White House press release of July 27 on President Quirino’s visit, see Department of State Bulletin, August 8, 1949, p. 199. For President Truman’s welcoming remarks, see White House press release of August 8, ibid., August 22, 1949, p. 276.