25.10.16

Philippines' Duterte Leaves U.S. Policymakers "Baffled"

During a four-day visit to the Philippines, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Russel remarked on the U.S.’ intent to remain a trusted ally of the Philippines while also voicing concern over Duterte’s anti-crime campaign that has resulted in as many as 4300 extrajudicial killings. Speaking after Duterte’s visit to China, Russel also made clear that the U.S. supported direct dialogue between China and the Philippines and that countries should not have to choose between the U.S. and China.
The Cipher Take: Russel’s words have become part of a familiar mantra for the U.S. as it attempts to separate responding to Duterte from its interactions with the Philippines as a whole. The current U.S. approach is to signal that it stands with the Philippines and its people, but condemns the words and violence Duterte has espoused in his short time as president.

Read more: https://www.thecipherbrief.com/article/asia/philippines-duterte-leaves-us-policymakers-baffled-1093

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