Balangiga bells arrive in Samar on eve of handover
December 15 2018 12:48 AM
Balangiga bells
Residents celebrate as workers (not pictured) unload one of the three church Balangiga bells after it arrived at the town plaza in Balangiga, in Eastern Samar province, yesterday, a day before a ceremony to return three bronze church bells taken by US troops.

Manila Times/Manila

The Balangiga bells finally arrived in Eastern Samar yesterday, the eve of the handover by President Rodrigo Duterte to the concerned local government instead of handing them directly to the Catholic Church.
Maj. Aristides Galang Jr, Philippine Air Force (PAF) spokesman, confirmed to reporters that the bells arrived at 10.28am aboard a C-130, which left Villamor Air Base in Pasay City at 7am yesterday.
The bells were flown to Villamor Air Base from Okinawa, Japan and were displayed at the PAF Aerospace Museum from December 12 to 13.
The bells arrived at the PAF main headquarters and were welcomed by Defence Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, US ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim, Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, among others.
Defence sources said Duterte would be turning over the bells to Balangiga town Mayor Randy Graza and not to the San Lorenzo de Martir Church, where the bells were taken by US forces during the Filipino-American war in 1901.

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