Lawmakers in the Philippines have rejected Perfecto Yasay as foreign secretary due to an alleged false statement over his holding US citizenship.The Commission on Appointments, consisting of upper and lower house legislators, voted not to appoint Yasay to the post on Wednesday.Cabinet ministers in the country have to be approved by the lawmakers' commission after the president made the appointment. The de facto dismissal came more than 8 months after the appointment by President Rodrigo Duterte.Last month, Yasay told the commission that he has not obtained US citizenship. But on Wednesday he admitted that he acquired it in 1986.Duterte will appoint Yasay's successor soon.Duterte is trying to strengthen ties with China for economic support despite conflicts over the South China Sea issue.At the same time, he is distancing himself from the US in connection with criticism of his hardline anti-drug measures.Yasay has been playing the role of a balancer, modifying controversial remarks by the president. Analysts point out that his dismissal could affect the country's diplomacy.
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