Philippines’ Duterte moves to terminate defence pact with US

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte plans to order the termination of the country’s visiting forces agreement with the United States, his spokesman said Friday.

Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said Duterte was also scheduled to speak to US President Donald Trump at “any time,” but the agenda was not clear.

“I will instruct the executive secretary to tell the foreign secretary to send the notice of termination to the US government,” Panelo quoted Duterte as saying.

It was not clear when the notice would be sent.

Last month, the president threatened to end the 1999 Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) after the US government cancelled a tourist visa issued to Senator Ronald Dela Rosa, the former national police chief and close political ally of Duterte.

“I’m warning you … if you won’t do the correction on this, I will terminate the … Visiting Forces Agreement. I’ll end that son of a b****,” the brash-speaking Duterte said in a January 23 speech.

Dela Rosa implemented Duterte’s crackdown against illegal drugs, which has left thousands of suspected drug users dead.

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