Duterte calls for stronger efforts vs ter­ror­ism, piracy

Tempo - - News - (Ge­na­lyn D. Ka­bil­ing)

Pres­i­dent Duterte sought stronger in­ter­na­tional co­op­er­a­tion to ef­fec­tively com­bat ter­ror­ism, sea piracy, and il­le­gal drug trade that pose dan­gers to re­gional peace and pros­per­ity at the open­ing of the As­so­ci­a­tion of South­east Asian Na­tions Sum­mit and Re­lated Meet­ings yes­ter­day in Pasay City.

Duterte placed such se­cu­rity threats high on the agenda of the re­gional talks and of­fered apol­ogy for do­ing so.

“Your Majesty, Your Ex­cel­len­cies, ladies and gentle­men, I apol­o­gize for set­ting the tone of my state­ment in such a man­ner. But I only want to em­pha­size that our meet­ings for the next two days present an ex­cel­lent op­por­tu­nity for us to en­gage in mean­ing­ful dis­cus­sion on mat­ters of re­gional and in­ter­na­tional im­por­tance,” the Pres­i­dent said in his re­marks.

“For ex­am­ple, ter­ror­ism and vi­o­lent ex­trem­ism en­dan­ger the peace, sta­bil­ity, and se­cu­rity of our re­gion be­cause these threats know no bound­aries,” he added.

Duterte warned that piracy and armed rob­bery in the seas have placed “a dent on our growth and dis­rupt the sta­bil­ity of both re­gional and global com­merce.”

The men­ace of il­le­gal drug trade also con­tin­ues “to en­dan­ger the very fab­ric of our so­ci­eties,” ac­cord­ing to Duterte, who has launched a controversial drug crack­down marred by al­leged rights abuses.

“These and other is­sues are high on the agenda of our meet­ings along with the other non-tra­di­tional se­cu­rity is­sues that chal­lenge the pros­per­ity of our economies, the in­tegrity of our in­sti­tu­tions, and more im­por­tantly, the safety of our peo­ple,” he said.

US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump, Viet­nam Prime Min­is­ter Nguyen Xuan Phuc, and Pres­i­dent Duterte per­form the group ASEAN hand­shake in the open­ing cer­e­mony of the As­so­ci­a­tion of South­east Asian Na­tions Sum­mit in Pasay City.

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