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Philippine president wants to be friends with Trump, Putin


    In this Oct. 26, photo, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte delivers a speech at the Philippine Economic Forum in Tokyo.

MANILA >> The Philippine president, who has lashed out at President Barack Obama for criticizing his deadly crackdown on drugs, said his ties with the United States are likely to improve under Donald Trump, but that he is also excited to meet Russian leader Vladimir Putin at an upcoming Asia-Pacific summit.

President Rodrigo Duterte made upbeat remarks about both the president-elect and Putin at a news conference late Tuesday in Manila.

Asked whether his ties with America can improve under Trump, Duterte replied: “I’m sure, we have no quarrel. I can always be a friend to anybody, especially to a … president, chief executive of another country.”

Duterte, who has been compared to Trump because of his irreverence toward rivals and critics, said he trusted the U.S. president-elect’s judgment and expected him to be fair in dealing with people living in the U.S. illegally.

Filipinos are one of the largest expatriate groups in the United States.

His friendly remarks were a departure from his comments on the campaign trail in March, when he took offense at being compared to Trump.

“Donald Trump is a bigot, I am not,” Duterte told The Associated Press, referring to Trump’s proposals to ban Muslims from entering the U.S and erect a wall along the Mexican border.

Duterte, 71, has had a frosty relationship with Obama and the U.S. government since U.S. officials expressed reservations about his anti-drug war, which is thought to have left more than 4,000 people dead since July. He has told Obama to “go to hell” and announced his “separation” from America, his country’s treaty ally, during a state visit to China last month.

Duterte later said he meant he wanted to chart a foreign policy that would not lean excessively on America.

His push away from Washington has been accompanied by approaches to China and Russia.

Duterte said he is looking forward to meeting with Putin at this month’s Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Peru, and wants the two countries to have stronger ties.

“I will not ask for anything. I want to be friends with him, I just want the two countries to be the best of friends,” he said.

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  • lol, I expect no less from Philippines Politicians. I applaud Duerte’s stance in trying to rid the Philippines of Drugs but not how he’s going about it, CRAZY insane but I guess he wants it done.

  • smart move need to be friends with the usa because we love you and i know you love us
    barry soetero obama was a fool and you was right about him..he should take care of his own problems
    be he be gone soon and i know president trump will be a good friend

  • …is he trying to the “Deadpool” Heart thing with his fingers? lol.
    No worry Pinoy, you’ll be fine under the Trump Administration. For starters, you share the same vision as President Trump! The War on Drugs!

  • Duturte isn’t a bigot, just a murderer. No civilized country in the world executes drug users without trial except the Philippine, and possibly North Korea.

    • Regarding:
      “Duturte isn’t a bigot, just a murderer. No civilized country in the world executes drug users without trial except the Philippine, and possibly North Korea.”

      In the bigger picture:
      “…..No civilized religion in the world executes/beheads, without trial except the muslims”

  • Duterte is an ignorant despotic dictator. Rodrigo Duterte will not see his term to completion. Dictators come and go and the people will only tolerate him while he plays the fool. He is classless, undignified and an embarrassment to the Filipino people. Countries do not have friends. Countries have borders that the defend. Natural resources that they use to their advantage. Treaties that they agree to. Relationship that are flexible. Countries prepare for war and hopes it never comes. The best things about a good country is freedom and frequent elections.

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