AFP, PNP: No security threats for ASEAN summit

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 26) — The military and police have assured the public there are no security threats directed at the 30th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Meetings being hosted in Manila from April 26 to 29.

Heads of state and government from 10 ASEAN member states are participating in the summit, namely: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, Laos, and the Philippines.

At a media briefing on Tuesday, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesperson Brigadier General Restituto Padilla said the military has not monitored any significant threats on the summit and related meetings, which kick off today, April 26.

"We don't see any threat right now, no serious threat that is in the radar screen, but our planning is always based on worst case scenarios," Padilla said.

Despite the absence of serious security threats, Padilla appealed to the public to be vigilant and work hand in hand with authorities.

"Ang aming pong patuloy na pakiusap sa taumbayan…na laging mapagmasid, laging maging alerto, maging vigilant, at laging nakikipagtulungan sa otoridad," he said.

[Translation: We continuously ask the public…to always be observant, always be alert, be vigilant, and always work with the authorities.]

He added that the Joint Task Force-National Capital Region (JTF-NCR), which will lead AFP forces during the summit, is fully equipped for the event.

Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Ronald Dela Rosa likewise said there are no imminent security threats.

"We are giving our assurance to the public that the PNP is doing its best. We are putting our best foot forward," Dela Rosa said.

Dela Rosa on Monday said they are doing everything "humanly possible" to secure the event.

"We have rehearsed and fine-tuned all our systems and procedures for this event such that we have established [a] full backup system that will address any unforeseen situation that may arise," he said.

Dela Rosa added the PNP has fielded an ASEAN Security Task Force with more than 27,000 personnel to ensure security and peace and order.

Authorities issued the statements following recent clashes between the Abu Sayyaf and government forces in Inabanga and Clarin, Bohol.

On Sunday, the ASEAN 2017 Committee on Security, Peace and Order, Emergency Preparedness and Response led by Interior Department Officer-in-Charge Catalino Cuy, mobilized more than 40,000 personnel from different agencies for final preparations for the summit.

The multi-agency contingent includes personnel from 21 government agencies, including the PNP, AFP, Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA), National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), and Land Transportation Office (LTO), and will be deployed to ensure the safety and security of all delegates.

This week's event is the first of two summits for the year. The Philippines is current chairman.

Of the 138 ASEAN-related meetings scheduled this 2017, two-thirds will be held in Manila.

The rest will be held at anothe summit in Clark and related meetings this November, where 22 heads of state -- including United Nations Secretary General António Guterres -- will attend.

READ: Security all set for ASEAN Summit in Manila

Heavy traffic expected

The ASEAN Summit this week is being held at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City.

Authorities said heavy traffic is expected in the area, and have advised the public to take alternate routes.

In its official twitter account, the ASEAN 2017 Chairmanship said the following roads were declared "ASEAN Lanes."

  • Sen. W. Diokno Boulevard
  • Jalandoni Street
  • V. Sotto Street
  • Bukaneg Street
  • Dela Rama Street
  • Arnaiz Avenue
  • Makati Avenue
  • Parkway Drive

The Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) complex will be an "ASEAN delegates only" zone during the inclusive dates.

ASEAN-2017-Rerouting-Routes-Roxas-Blvd_CNNPH.png  

Rerouting will be implemented on Sen. W. Diokno Boulevard, Jalandoni Street, V. Sotto Street, Bukaneg Street, and A. Dela Rama Street in Pasay City, which will be on lockdown from April 28 to 30.

MMDA Task Force ASEAN 2017 head of operations Manny Miro said the roads will also be on partial lockdown prior to the arrival of delegates.

He said individuals with business in the area on April 26 to 27 will be subject to tight screening and questioning after providing valid proof of ID.

ASEAN-alt-route-Makati.png  

Meanwhile, occasional traffic disruptions may happen on Arnaiz and Makati avenues in Makati City, and along the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Expressway and the elevated Skyway. A "stop and go" protocol will be implemented along the roads, which will be closed to the public whenever a delegate uses the route.

Malacañang has also declared work suspensions for the 30th ASEAN summit on April 27 and 28.

Work will be suspended on April 27 for government offices in Manila, Makati, and Pasay, according to Memorandum Circular 18 issued by Malacañang on Friday.

Classes and work for government and private offices in Metro Manila will be suspended on April 28.

READ: Palace declares work suspension for ASEAN Summit

To avoid inconvenience, the MIAA has advised the public -- especially those with flights on the said day --  to plan their trips ahead.

Authorities are also reminding passengers to be at the airport at least three hours before their flight.

CNN Philippines' Ivy Saunar and Isabella Montano contributed to this report