Published: Tue, November 14, 2017
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

We'll buy arms from Russia, Philippines' Duterte tells Putin

Russian Federation and China support Philippine's efforts in fighting terrorism and drug crimes, the republic's President Rodrigo Duterte said in a comment on his contacts with leaders of those countries at the APEC summit in Vietnam. "I would like to pour more money [into] this medium, small, and micro enterprise", he said to loud applause during the launch of an Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) business mentorship program.

"When I was a teenager, I would go in and out of jail".

Mr. Duterte is in Vietnam with dozens of other world leaders for the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit meeting.

"I'm a very good mediator and arbitrator", Trump said during a news conference with Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang in Hanoi before flying here.

"A real person, a rumble, a stabbing". It was just over a look.

"The most productive, by the way, was our talk with President Xi Jinping and President Putin", Duterte said in his arrival speech at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

Duterte won last year's presidential elections after promising to eradicate illegal drugs with an unprecedented crackdown that would see up to 100,000 people killed.

Senator Leila de Lima, a Filipino politician who has condemned Duterte's efforts, was herself charged with drug trafficking after speaking publicly in opposition to the brutality, charges the European Union believes are bogus.

But critics at home and overseas warn that he is orchestrating a campaign of extrajudicial mass murder, carried out by corrupt police and hired vigilantes.

The US official said counterterrorism efforts will also be discussed and "President Trump is going to be congratulating President Duterte on the recent liberation of Marawi City in Mindanao from the ISIS-linked" Maute terror group. "We can expect East Asian leaders to exercise a diplomatic blind eye to the killings of thousands of Filipinos over the past 16 months as part of Duterte's drug war". "He is not the [head of the] Human Rights Commission", he said.

Human Rights Watch has pursued its own investigation and said it found inconsistencies in some police reports, namely instances where police asserted self-defence to justify their actions, "contrary to eyewitness accounts that portray the killings as cold-blooded murders".

Esquire magazine quoted Duterte as saying in an interview before he became president that he "maybe" stabbed someone to death when he was 17 years old, in what may be a reference to the incident described in Danang.

The two leaders are also often compared with each other for their tough talk and controversial statements.

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