Duterte-Putin
President Rodrigo Duterte called Russian President Vladimir Putin his “idol,” saying they have similarities.
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Duterte wants to meet with 'idol' Putin in APEC
Alexis Romero (Philstar.com) - November 15, 2016 - 10:55pm
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte is seeking a bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Peru to boost the ties between Manila and Moscow. 
 
Duterte said he expressed his interest to meet with Putin during a talk with Russian Ambassador to the Philippines Igor Khovaev in Malacañang Tuesday night.
 
“It will push through. I was the one who asked for it. Earlier tonight, I had a long talk with the ambassador of Russia. I reiterated my desire to meet Putin, bilateral,” the president said in an interview with reporters.  
 
“I won’t ask for anything. I want to be friends with him. I just want to the two countries to be the best of friends. This is an economic world. If there are things we can sell them or export to them, it would be good,” he added. 
 
Duterte has expressed his intention to strengthen ties with Russia and China following a rift with the United States over his brutal crackdown on illegal drugs. The US, a traditional ally and treaty partner of the Philippines, has been critical of Duterte’s anti-drug war, which has claimed the lives of more than 3,000 suspected drug offenders. 
 
Duterte has called Putin his “idol,” saying he and the Russian leader have similarities. 
 
“He (Putin) has no illusions about himself. He knows that he was not trained for politics. Nor to be a statesman. He acts just like a President. My characterization of Putin is what I would describe myself," the president said in an interview with Al Jazeera interview last month. 
 
Duterte is flying for Peru on Thursday for the APEC summit, an event to be attended by 21 heads of state. 
 
APEC is the Philippines’ second most important regional grouping after the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The economic bloc consists of Peru, United States, Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Chinese Taipei, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines. 
 
The Philippines’ total trade volume with APEC economies is about $103 billion or more than 80 percent of Philippine trade.

PRESIDENT RODY DUTERTE PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN
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