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Duterte skips APEC gala dinner again

Duterte has skipped the APEC gala dinner hosted by Vietnam in order to rest early, according to Foreign Affairs secretary Alan Cayetano. Presidential Communications Office/FILE

DA NANG -- President Duterte skipped the APEC gala dinner and cultural presentation hosted by Vietnam President Quang Friday night.

Foreign Affairs Sec. Alan Cayetano and wife, Lani, represented the President during the event.

According to Cayetano, the president wanted to rest early due to his early schedule for the APEC leaders' retreat Saturday.

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque, however, gave different reasons in a Facebook post why Duterte skipped the dinner.

"The President was not able to attend the gala dinner because of two things: 1. He is attending to urgent ASEAN hosting matters; 2. He is supervising and coordinating safe recovery of Vietnamese captives of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG)," Roque said.

It can be recalled that Duterte also skipped the 2016 APEC gala dinner due to migraine.

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READ: ‘Ailing’ Duterte skips APEC gala dinner

He later admitted he was avoiding then US President Barack Obama.

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