Sat, May 18, 2013 - Page 1 News List

Manila must take blame: Lin

‘UNINTENDED’ UNACCEPTABLE:Philippine government personnel killed an unarmed fisherman ‘in an unacceptable act of violence’ and then fled the scene, the minister said

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff reporter

Taiwan has sent a team to the Philippines to look into the case, but it has been reported that the Philippines has rejected a joint probe.

According to media reports in Manila, Philippine Department of Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said the agency had rejected the proposal of a joint investigation.

The Philippine National Bureau of Investigation, which is investigating the case, has already made progress in its probe and bringing in a Taiwanese contingent may cause “interference,” De Lima said.

“But the two countries can cooperate with each other on their individual investigations,” De Lima said, adding that “we will see up to what extent the cooperation between the two teams of investigators should be, but it’s not going to be a joint investigation.”

Lin called on the Philippine government to enter into a joint investigation with Taiwanese law enforcement personnel, as it has committed to a thorough, exhaustive, impartial and expeditious investigation.

MECO and its counterpart, the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Manila, “have already made arrangements for coordination between our investigating team and theirs, under the provisions of the Agreement on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters concluded last month,” Lin said.

An official familiar with the matter said on condition of anonymity that Taipei has received a letter from Perez after he returned to Manila on Thursday saying that the Philippine government would permit a joint investigation.

In the past two days in Manila, Taiwan’s investigation has established some preliminary contacts with related government agencies, including the Philippine Department of Justice, Lin said.

"This is the first step, the Philippines will also send an investigating team to Taiwan,” he said.

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