Address over the radio by Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Claro M. Recto, Manila, October 20, 1943:

With the emergence of the Philippines as an independent State, it becomes both our privilege and duty to initiate and maintain relations with the other independent nations of the world. The Republic that we have just established has been accorded immediate recognition by several countries and, it is expected, will soon be accorded recognition by many more. Japan, in keeping with the great role that she played in sponsoring our emancipation, has honored us by accrediting to our government an Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary in the person of a distinguished Japanese statesman, His Excellency, Mr. Syozo Murata.

To all these manifestations of friendship for our people and of regard for our international personality, we must respond in a manner befitting a free and sovereign nation. Alive to this urgent need, the National Assembly has passed, and the President has approved, an Act creating the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Having been called upon to head this new office, I have accepted the grave responsibility that goes with it, in the belief that I shall be doing my part in our concerted national effort, just as countless other Filipinos are doing theirs. I take this opportunity to express my deep appreciation for the trust and confidence reposed in me by the President in choosing my humble self as his closest adviser and assistant in the conduct of our foreign affairs in this most critical period of our international relations.

It is not for me to announce the specific tenets of foreign policy that the new Republic will follow, or to dwell on the manner of its shaping and execution. I shall only say that the cornerstone of that policy has been declared by our fundamental law to be our determination to contribute to the creation of a world order based on peace, liberty and moral justice, which implies, as the President said in his meaningful message on the night of October the fourteenth, the promotion of everlasting amity and good-will of all the nations and peoples of the world. As the first step towards that end, we shall seek to maintain special relations of friendship, consideration and attachment toward the other countries of East Asia with whom we are linked by ties of geographical propinquity, racial affinity, economic reciprocity, and common purpose.

I It is our intention and firm resolve, as a nation that has just come into the fullness of its sovereign status, to earn the respect of other nations, to live in peace, friendship and harmony with them, and not to resort to arms except in defense of our independence and territorial integrity against any external threat or menace. The success of our efforts will depend upon the unfaltering support and cooperation of our people. It should be clear to them that we Filipinos owe no allegiance to any foreign power; that the Government of this Republic is a government by the Filipinos and for the Filipinos alone; that the Constitution we have sworn to defend is our own Constitution; and that the President, whose courage, wisdom, statesmanship and patriotism constitute the strongest bulwark of our freedom during this period of trial, is our own President.

If in the past the Filipino people have had differences of opinion as to which was the surest way to independence, there is now no I longer any reason for such disunity. The cherished time-honored aspiration of all of us to be free and independent has been attained, and from here onwards we shall march as one body, along the same path, without faltering and with supreme faith in our national destiny.

Source: Office of the Solicitor General Library