“Warm and cordial” first brief encounter between Duterte and Trump at Apec sidelines

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and US President Donald Trump met for the first time for a brief conversation on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit in Danang, Vietnam, on Saturday, according to The Manila Times Online on Sunday.

Special assistant to the president Christopher “Bong” Go said in a text message that the two leaders told each other “See you tomorrow”.

Palace spokesman Harry Roque told reporters in Vietnam that the encounter was short but it was “warm and cordial”.

The two leaders will be meeting each other on the sideline of the Asean summit in Manila today (Sunday).

Prior to their first meeting, Duter and Trump had talked on the phone at least twice, discussing issues of common concern such as the crisis in the Korean Peninsula.

Trump also expressed support for Duterte’s war on drugs which has been heavily criticized at home and abroad.

Harry Roque said Duterte would refuse to pursue any talks related to a domestic issue such as his war on drugs.

He added that he is confident that President Trump, having endorsed Duterte’s war on drugs, would not bring up the issue in their meeting in Manila.