President Duterte said the alleged cases of extrajudicial killings were not discussed during his brief interaction with United States President Donald Trump at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit in Da Nang, Vietnam.
“Not extrajudicial killing. Well, he cannot afford it. We do not talk about these things because, first of all, they are not true; and the second is, we do not do it,” Duterte said in his arrival speech at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport yesterday.
Duterte is confident that Trump will not bring up the issue in their bilateral talks in Manila during the 31st Association of Southeast Asian Nations Summit. “I’m sure he will not take it up,” Duterte said.
“He is not the Human Rights Commission. So it’s only the representatives there. Because the US, like the Philippines, is run by three great departments,” he added.
Duterte said he was able to shake the hand of Trump who kept on saying “goodbye” to him and they will see each other at the ASEAN Summit. “See you tomorrow,” Trump reportedly told Duterte during their meeting in Vietnam.
Duterte said Trump commended him on how he handled the drug situation in the country and the Marawi siege that ended recently.
“And he said something about, ‘You know, you handle it very well.’ These are the things that you do not brag about: The Marawi and then the drugs,” Duterte said.
Duterte and Trump’s formal meeting during the 31st ASEAN Summit would be their first since the two assumed office last year. (Argyll Cyrus B. Geducos)