31 May 2018–The Indian Directorate of Film Festivals in collaboration with the Indian Ministry of External Affairs and all ten (10) ASEAN member-countries’ Embassies in New Delhi organized the ASEAN-India Film Festival with the theme, “Friendship through Films,” as part of the series of events to commemorate the 25 years of ASEAN and India relation. The festival was held at the Siri Fort Auditorium, New Delhi from 25 to 30 May 2018.
On 25 May 2018, Minister of State (I/C) for Information and Broadcasting and Sports and Youth Affairs, Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore inaugurated the film festival. Also present in the occasion were MEA Secretary East Preeti Saran, officials from the different Indian Government agencies, a representative from ASEAN Secretariat, and ASEAN Heads of Mission and representatives. The Philippine Embassy was represented by Deputy Chief of Mission Mr. Arvin. R. de Leon, with the Attaches, Mr. Edwin Juan Batallones and Ms. Marra Kristine Ty.
The opening ceremony was followed by the screening of the very first Jasari language movie “Sinjar” from India. Around 32 films from 11 countries were screened during the film festival. The Philippines had three movie entries, namely: Women of the Weeping River by Sheron Deyoc, Pagdating sa Dulo by Ishmael Bernal, and Birdshot by Mikhail Red.
On 27 May 2018, Ms. Sharifa Pearlsia Ali Dans, Actress in the Women of the Weeping River film was a speaker in one of the panel sessions of the film festival. The discussions focused on films as a vehicle for cultural friendship, portrayal of woman in ASEAN cinema, as well as ASEAN-India Film market co-production opportunities. Students of Film, Media and Drama Institutes were invited to these interactive sessions.
Philippine participation in the festival was made possible through the support of the Film Development Council of the Philippines.
25 May 2018, Philippine Ambassador Ma. Teresita C. Daza attended a roundtable discussion organized by the Ambassador of Vietnam as current Chair of the ASEAN-New Delhi Committee. ASEAN Ambassadors to New Delhi as well as scholars/ Indian experts on international affairs and foreign policy.
The discussants included Former Ambassador Rajiv Bhatia, Dr. Arvind Gupta of India Foundation, Ms. Indrani Bagchi of Times of India, Major General BK Sharma and Professor Srikanth Kondapalli of Jawaharlal Nehru University. Topics ranged from changes in international and regional development, India’s foreign policy and ASEAN.
H.E. Tôn SinhThành, Ambassador of Vietnam to India, served as moderator during the discussions.
President Rodrigo Duterte on 15 May 2018 signed a proclamation declaring a portion of Benham Rise (Philippine Rise) a marine protected area.
The President signed the proclamation providing for the declaration of 50,000 hectares of the underwater plateau, located east of Luzon, as a “strict protection zone limited to scientific studies.” More than 300,000 hectares of the 13-million hectare area, will be designated as a special fisheries management area.
The United Nations had in 2012 awarded Philippine Rise formerly called Benham Rise to the Philippines as an extension of its continental shelf. With the ruling, the country was granted”sovereign rights” over Philippine Rise, which means the Philippines has exclusive rights to explore and exploit resources there. Source: Internet News Articles.
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