Trump invites Philippines’ Duterte to the White House
President Trump has invited Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to the White House, according to a readout of Trump’s call with the leader on Saturday.
“President Trump enjoyed the conversation and said that he is looking forward to visiting the Philippines in November,” the readout said, adding that Trump invited Duterte to the White House “to discuss the importance of the United States-Philippines alliance.”
Duterte made headlines last year when he told former President Barack Obama to “go to hell” after Obama criticized the Philippine leader’s drug war.
“I am the president of a sovereign country, and I am not answerable to anyone except the Filipino people. Son of a b—h, I will swear at you,” Duterte said.
Since he took office last year, Duterte has encouraged the extrajudicial killings of thousands of citizens accused of dealing or using drugs. He also compared his campaign to kill criminals to the Holocaust.
“Hitler massacred 3 million Jews. Now, there are 3 million drug addicts [in the Philippines] … I’d be happy to slaughter them,” he said in September.
Duterte also compared himself to Trump earlier this month, praising the U.S. president as “a realistic and a pragmatic thinker” and saying of his approach to tackling illegal drug trade, “He will really kill you.”
The White House readout on Saturday noted that Trump and Duterte discussed the country’s war on drugs.
“They also discussed the fact that the Philippine government is fighting very hard to rid its country of drugs, a scourge that affects many countries throughout the world,” it said.