Government to replace Manila envoy to Beijing

MANILA -- President Benigno Aquino III instructed Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto del Rosario on Monday to start the process of finding a replacement for Philippine ambassador to China Sonia Brady.

Brady suffered a stroke last Wednesday. She is currently under medical observation in a hospital in Beijing, said Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez.

In an interview during the National Heroes' Day rites at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, Del Rosario said Brady might be brought back to the country from Beijing in two weeks time if her condition improves.

"She's recovering slowly. Hopefully, if the recovery rate continues, we may be able to bring her back to Philippines in about two weeks time," he said.

Asked if he has already someone in mind to replace Brady, Del Rosario said, "I think I will have to discuss that with the President."

He added that Brady could not be able to speak at the moment following the stroke.

Del Rosario assured that Brady is being properly attended to and her condition is carefully monitored.

He likewise assured that Brady's condition will not affect the ongoing issue on West Philippine Sea as there are capable people taking in-charge of the Beijing post.

"We have people in-charge there so I think there would be no adverse impact to that," del Rosario said.

He noted that Aquino is still contemplating as to when the government intends to send back ships to disputed Panatag (Scarborough) shoal.

The 70-year-old envoy was brought to a hospital last Wednesday after she passed out in her residence in Beijing.

Aquino named Brady as the country's ambassador in China last May.

She has been appointed to the same position during the Arroyo administration from 2006 to 2010. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)

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