Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping shake hands after a signing ceremony held in Beijing, China October 20, 2016. REUTERS/Ng Han Guan/Pool
Reuters: U.S. to seek explanation of Duterte's comment on 'separation'
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States will seek an explanation from the Philippines for President Rodrigo Duterte's announcement of a "separation" from Washington, the State Department said on Thursday, calling the remarks baffling and at odds with the two countries' close relationship.
Duterte said during a visit to China on Thursday that "America has lost" in military and economic ties with the Philippines and "I announce my separation from the United States."
"We are going to be seeking an explanation of exactly what the president meant when he talked about separation from the U.S.," said State Department spokesman John Kirby. "It's not clear to us exactly what that means in all its ramifications."
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Previous Post: Philippine President Duterte Says U.S. Has Lost. Will Align With China
WNU Editor: The Philippine President was very blunt .... and considering what China and Russia are offering him, not surprising. This is a pivotal moment in Asia .... everyone is now realising that the U.S. cannot match what China can offer, and in the case of the Philippines it is in the form of financial assistance, investments, loans, trade concessions, etc. .... U.S. has few good options for response to Philippines' Duterte (Reuters). As for President Obama's Asian pivot .... this is a nail in that coffin.