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Chinese flags flown at House of Representatives

Chinese flags were flown in front of the main building of the House of Representatives on Monday in connection with the visit of a ranking Chinese government official.

The visitor was His Excellency Ji Bingxuan, Vice Chairman of the National People's Congress of the People's Republic of China, who was accompanied by a delegation.

According to Edith Cardenas, director of the House Inter-Parliamentary Relations Service, it is normal for the Philippine government to give honor to high-ranking foreign dignitaries visiting the country like Ji.

Philippine government officials are given the same treatment when they visit other countries, she said.

Cardenas said as far as she can recall, it was not the first time that flags of other countries were raised at the House when a foreign official pays a visit.

Upon his arrival at the House, Ji briefly met with Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo together with other ranking members of the National People's Congress (NPC) of China.

He then met with Deputy Speaker Arthur Yap, who represented Arroyo.

Among the matters they discussed during the meeting was the further strengthening of relations of the Philippines and China particularly in the fields of agriculture, trade, infrastructure, education, and culture and the arts.

Other members of the delegation team from China include Hon. Liao Xiaojun, NPC Standing Committee Member and Vice Chairman of NPC Agriculture and Rural Committee, Hon. Cong Bin, NPC Standing Committee member and Vice Chairman of the NPC Constitution and Law Committee, and Hon. Lu Peijun, NPC Standing Committee member and Vice Chairman of the NPC Foreign Affairs Committee.

AKO BICOL party-list Rodel Batocabe said flags of other countries would be flown at the House as well when other foreign dignitaries visit.

"Siguro sa susunod, dapat hindi lang Chinese, kundi kung sino yung bisita natin dito ay dapat gawin yan para hindi na masabi na hindi lang tayo nagbibigay ng special attention sa China," Batocabe told reporters in a press conference.

"I do hope kapag may bisita tayo galing sa ibang bansa, gawin yan nila." —KBK, GMA News