Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte calls Obama a “son of a bitch”

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte’s profanity-laced remarks against US President Barack Obama, calling him a “son of a bitch” has spoiled his maiden appearance in the international stage as head of state. The comments prompted Washington to call off a bilateral meeting.

Duterte has bristled repeatedly at criticism over his “war on drugs”, which has killed about 2,400 people since he took office two months ago, and on Monday said it would be “rude” for Obama to raise the question of human rights when they met. Such a conversation, Duterte told reporters, would prompt him to curse at Obama, using a Filipino phrase “putang ina” which can mean “son of a bitch” or “son of a whore”.
It soured Obama’s last swing as president through a region he has tried to make a focus of U.S. foreign policy, a strategy widely seen as a response to China’s economic and military muscle-flexing. He said in a speech as the summit got under way that his push to make the United States a key player in Asia-Pacific was not some “passing fad”.

Diplomats say strains with longtime ally the Philippines could compound Washington’s difficulties in forging a united front with Southeast Asian partners on the South China Sea.
After Washington called off Tuesday’s bilateral meeting between Obama and Duterte in response, the Philippines issued two statements expressing regret.

Duterte has repeatedly poured scorn on critics, usually with curses. He lambasted the United Nations after it criticized the surge in killings and he turned down a meeting with U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. In May, he called Pope Francis a “son of a whore”, and called U.S. Ambassador Philip Goldberg a “gay son of a whore”.
"I am a president of a sovereign state and we have long ceased to be a colony. I do not have any master except the Filipino people, nobody but nobody. You must be respectful. Do not just throw questions. Putang ina, I will swear at you in that forum,"

"Who is he (Obama) to confront me?" adding that the Philippines had not received an apology from the United States for misdeeds committed during its colonization of the country.
An arbitration court in The Hague in July invalidated China’s territorial claims in the South China after a case was brought by the Philippines, a ruling Beijing refuses to recognize.