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The leaders, however, avoided stating the bloody and controversial “war on drugs” of the Filipino.
The president of the United States, Donald Trump, and that of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, highlighted on Tuesday (14.11.2017) the importance of preserving life and human rights, but avoided objecting to the violent “war against drugs” in the country. Asian.
“The two sides stressed that human rights and the dignity of human life are essential and agreed to continue prioritizing human rights in their national plans,” they said in a joint statement issued a day after their bilateral meeting in Manila.
At the meeting on Sunday, Duterte presented Trump with the achievements of his anti-drug campaign that, according to official figures, has caused 6,000 deaths -more than 7,000 according to other estimates-, 4,000 of them at the hands of the police, and has reduced crime by more than one third in one year and four months. The statement mentioned in one of its 14 points this fight against drugs by stating that both leaders “recognized that the use of illegal drugs is a problem that affects both countries and agreed to share best practices” in prevention, research and rehabilitation.
Earlier, Duterte’s spokesman, Harry Roques, had stated that the issue of human rights had not been discussed at the meeting. “There was no mention of human rights, there was no mention of extrajudicial killings,” he said.
Trump is still in line
The first meeting between Trump and Duterte had generated great expectations, as several organizations had demanded that the US president recriminate the Filipino human rights violations of the “war on drugs.”
This was considered, however, unlikely since last May Trump openly praised the achievements of the bloody campaign to tackle crime in a telephone conversation with Duterte.
The meeting between the two, which also focused on issues such as the Islamic State or trade, took place during the series of meetings of the summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) that ends today in Manila. The summit, which is joined on Tuesday by the parallel East Asian Forum, includes bilateral and multilateral meetings between the US, China, South Korea, Japan, India, the European Union (EU), Russia, Australia, New Zealand and the UN