Philippines' Duterte set for drug war backing at ASEAN summit

14 November, 2017, 00:51 | Author: Brenda Erickson
  • Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte performs the hit Philippine song

As US President Donald Trump prepares to meet leaders at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit in the Philippines capital of Manila on 12 and 13 November 2017, Amnesty is calling on him to condemn President Duterte's murderous "war on drugs", and push him to investigate the unlawful killing of thousands of people around the country.

The White House said earlier that human rights had come up "briefly" in the context of the Philippines' fight against illegal drugs.

"There was no mention of human rights [issues]".

Eyes will be on whether Trump does the fist pump, having told Duterte in April he was doing a "great job" in his drug war.

Duterte sang in a duet with a local diva Pilita Corrales, performing a popular song, "Ikaw" (You), which goes: "You are the love I have been waiting for". President Trump must also make clear that any future United States assistance to the country will be linked to clear progress in reforming the PNP and ending impunity in the police.

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President Donald Trump is wrapping up his extensive trip to Asia with an worldwide summit and one-on-one meetings with global partners, including his Philippine host who is overseeing a bloody drug war.

Trump was supposed to join hands with Vietnam's Prime Minister, Nguyen Xuan, and Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte, but instead ended up cradling Nguyen's hand with both of his - breaking the line in two.

But rights groups have expressed alarm and disappointment that Trump and most others are likely to endorse or stay silent over Duterte's violent rule, which has seen thousands of people killed.

"The neo-liberal pillars of ASEAN such as deregulation, privatization and deregulation are historically proven to throw Filipino poor to inescapable cycle of poverty and misery, and at present with US President Trump's attendance, the world is being pushed to the brink of a nuclear war via his aggressive threats against North Korea", Casilao said.

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