Statement of Claro M. Recto, on his appointment as Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Manila, October 20, 1943:

Upon assuming the post of Foreign Minister of the Republic, I wish to express my appreciation for the confidence and trust reposed in me by the President.

Our Republic has been established in the midst and, in great part, as a result of a tremendous world upheaval whose course and profound effects we can neither predict nor single-handedly control.

Our nation is yet young and weak; our greatest need at this time is for concerted, uninterrupted, and unhampered development of our spiritual and material resources; and consequently our foreign policy should be mainly concerned with facilitating and protecting the free course of this vital process, endeavoring to secure from the outside world that respect, consideration and degree of cooperation consistent with sovereignty, which will enable us freely and without fear of undue interference to attain for our people the greatest possible measure of freedom, order, and contentment within our national boundaries.

We are determined, as we have expressed in the preamble of our Constitution, to contribute to the creation of a world order based on peace, liberty and moral justice. We are not at war and we are not going to go to war against any nation unless we shall find it necessary for the defense of the territorial integrity and the independence of our country. The Government of the Republic will, therefore, earnestly and indefatigably seek to uphold the honor and liberties of the Filipino people with goodwill toward all who respect our sovereignty and national integrity, and with special relations of amity with the kindred peoples in the Greater East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere, of which the Philippines, is a full-pledged member.

Source: Office of the Solicitor General Library