The Enrile – Trillanes feud
The intense debate between Senator Juan Ponce Enrile and Sen. Antonio Trillanes started after tangling over a bill dividing Camarines Sur. Enrile read Ambassador to China Sonia Brady’s diplomatic notes that suggested Trillanes was working to advance China’s interest and was undermining the Philippines position on the dispute.
Trillanes volunteered to help defuse the standoff between the Philippines and Chinese vessels at the Panatag Shoul. The extent of involvement of Trillanes should have remained confidential. There were also details on the position taken by Trillanes and the words he allegedly said “Those are absolutely confidential.” The revelation of Sen. Enrile was tantamount to revealing a state secret, as negotiator, the acts and the negotiations made by Trillanes should be held as state secret, under no circumstances should it be revealed.
Trillanes incurred the ire of Enrile after Trillanes delivered a speech denouncing the Senate President’s bullying allegedly to pressure other Senators into approving the bill dividing Camarines Sur.
Trillanes had claimed that Enrile was acting at the behest of former President Arroyo and that dividing the province would benefit Arroyo allies, Luis Villafuerte and Arnulfo Fuentebella.
In any event, Enrile’s revelation was wrong. The public is not supposed to know about this diplomatic notes because diplomacy is always conducted in secret. Sen. Enrile may have compromised state secrets when he read on the Senate floor the notes of Ambassador Sonia Brady.
By: Joey E. Clarin
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