UPDATED 8:51 AM PT — Thursday, May 16, 2019
The Philippines is recalling its top diplomats from Canada amid an ongoing dispute between the two nations. The Philippine foreign ministry secretary ordered the withdrawal Thursday after Canada missed a deadline to remove containers of trash from the Southeast Asian nation.
Around 100 containers of rotting garbage were shipped to Philippine ports back in 2013 and 2014. Canada has said it’s working to remove the containers, but it’s unclear when that could happen.
A Philippine spokesman said Canada’s refusal to take back their garbage has been disruptive to diplomatic relations.
“That recall shows that we are very serious in asking them to get back their garbage, otherwise we’re gonna severe relations with them,” stated Salvador Panelo, presidential spokesperson for the Philippines.
Back in April, the president of the Philippines threatened war with Canada, adding, he would personally escort the containers back to the North American country.