At first, President Barack Obama called off the supposed first ever meeting with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte after the newly-elected president warned the US president not to challenge him over extrajudicial killings.
“You must be respectful. Do not just throw questions,” Duterte said about Obama. He added, “Putang ina (Son of a bitch) I will swear at you in that forum.” He made the statement to reporters in Manila.
“Clearly, he’s a colorful guy. What I’ve instructed my team to do is talk to their Philippine counterparts to find out is this in fact a time where we can have some constructive, productive conversations,” Obama said about the matter.
“I always want to make sure that if I’m having a meeting, that it’s actually productive and we’re getting something done,” Obama told the media.
And after that, people were ashamed of their country, blaming the president on his unclassy, controversial remarks.
But after everything said and done, Duterte says he regrets the “strong comments” he made that looked as if it were a “personal attack.”
The statement released by Duterte says:
“While the immediate cause was my strong comments to certain press questions that elicited concern and distress we also regret it came across as a personal attack on the US president.”
“The meeting between the United States and the Philippines has been mutually agreed upon to be moved to a later date,” Duterte’s statement read.
“President Duterte explained that the press reports that President Obama would lecture him on extrajudicial killings led to his strong comments, which in turn elicited concern. He regrets that his remarks to the press have caused much controversy,” said Palace Communications Secretary Martin Andanar.
Additionally, “Our primary intention is to chart an independent foreign policy while promoting closer ties with all nations, especially the US with which we have had a long-standing partnership.”
Lastly, “We look forward to ironing out differences arising out of national priorities and perceptions, and working in mutually responsible ways for both countries.”