Trump hails US ties with Asean, PH

Manila Times - - NEWS -

- ing warm­ing ties be­tween the two out­spo­ken lead­ers.

“Ro­drigo, I would like to com­mend you and your suc­cess as Asean chair at this very crit­i­cal mo­ment in time and in the as im­por­tant event and I want to thank you for your in­cred­i­ble hospi­tal­ity,” Trump said.

Speak­ing at the 40th Asean-US com­mem­o­ra­tive sum­mit, Trump said: “We want part­ners in the re­gion to be strong, and pros­per­ous, in con­trol of their des­tinies and satel­lites to no one. These are our vi­sion: a free and open

Duterte led Asean lead­ers in their di­a­logue with Trump, be­ing chair­man of Asean on the re­gional

Duterte said the “pres­ence of the Pres­i­dent of the United States au­gurs well for the con­ti­nu­ity and the fu­ture of Asean and for re­gional peace and sta­bil­ity at large.”

Trump said that for 50 years, Asean “has put to­gether a vi­tal as­sem­bly of na­tions to build con­sen­sus on crit­i­cal is­sues fac­ing the re­gion and the world.”

The US is thus com­mit­ted to fo­rum for to­tal co­op­er­a­tion, he said.

“You have cre­ated a fo­rum for all na­tions with a stake in and de­velop so­lu­tions to come and chal­lenge through strate­gic di­a­logue,” Trump said.

Bi­lat­eral meet

Duterte also met Trump dur­ing a 40-minute bi­lat­eral meet­ing at the side­lines of the Asean sum­mit, re­la­tion­ship” be­tween the US and the Philip­pines.

- ship. This has been very suc­cess­ful,” Trump told Duterte, who con­grat­u­lated the Filipino leader for “beau­ti­fully” han­dling the Asean sum­mit.

The Amer­i­can leader also ex­pressed his ap­pre­ci­a­tion for the treat­ment” of Asean lead­ers and di­a­logue part­ners who graced the event.

“I really en­joyed be­ing here. The weather is al­ways good. To about the Philip­pines, even­tu­ally it gets good no mat­ter what. But we very much ap­pre­ci­ate the great treat­ment you have given us,” Trump said.

Philip­pines as pres­i­dent.

Rights is­sues not raised

Palace spokesman Harry Roque said the is­sue of al­leged hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions in the war on drugs did not come up dur­ing bi­lat­eral talks be­tween Duterte and Trump.

The two lead­ers, how­ever, had a “frank dis­cus­sion” on sev­eral is­sues, in­clud­ing the il­le­gal drug trade.

“The is­sue of hu­man rights did not arise. It was not brought up. It was Pres­i­dent Duterte who dis­cussed with Pres­i­dent Trump the drug men­ace in the Philip­pines, and the US pres­i­dent ap­peared sym­pa­thetic and did not mat­ter, merely nod­ding his head, in­di­cat­ing that he un­der­stood the do­mes­tic prob­lem that we face on drugs,” Roque said.

“Pres­i­dent Trump specif­i­cally said that he has al­ways been a friend of the Duterte ad­min­is­tra­tion, and that like pre­vi­ous ad­min­is­tra­tions of the United States, he stressed that he can be counted upon as a friend of the Duterte ad­min­is­tra­tion,” he added.

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