McCain hits Trump for ignoring human rights in Philippines

McCain hits Trump for ignoring human rights in Philippines
© Camille Fine

Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainCindy McCain planning 'intimate memoir' of life with John McCain Trump-McConnell rift divides GOP donors Arkansas state senator says he's leaving Republican Party MORE (R-Ariz.) on Monday called it “sad” that President Trump did not make human rights a priority during his meeting with Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte. 

The White House said the two leaders “briefly” discussed human rights in the context of Duterte’s drug crackdown, but the Philippine president’s spokesman said the issue was not discussed. 

Since taking office in 2016, Duterte has carried out a “war on drugs,” which has led to thousands of killings of suspected drug dealers and users, according to Human Rights Watch.


Trump praised Duterte at an Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit, saying the two have had “a great relationship.” He later laughed when Duterte referred to members of the press as “spies,” according to a reporter traveling with Trump.

McCain, who has been an outspoken critic of Trump, also ripped the president on Saturday for ignoring human rights violations during his stop in Danang, Vietnam.

McCain was captured and tortured by the North Vietnamese during the Vietnam War.