Duterte meets UN chief at ASEAN dinner

Paterno Esmaquel II
A handout photo shows Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte shaking hands with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at the ASEAN gala dinner in Laos

VIENTIANE, Laos – More than 3 months after first hitting the United Nations (UN), Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte met UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at a gala dinner on Wednesday evening, September 7.

A handout photo shows Duterte shaking hands with Ban at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) gala dinner in Vientiane, Laos, on Wednesday evening. 

FIRST MEETING. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte meets with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for the first time at the ASEAN gala dinner in Vientiane, Laos. Handout photo

Duterte has detested Ban’s remarks on extrajudicial killings in the Philippines.

On June 2, even before he took office, Duterte criticized the UN for failing to solve the conflict in the Middle East and not helping the “black people” in Africa.

Months later, Duterte threatened to leave the UN because of his “frustrations” with the international body. The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), however, clarified that the Philippines remains “committed” to the UN.

Earlier on Wednesday, Duterte also briefly met with US President Barack Obama

Referring to Duterte and Obama, DFA spokesman Charles Jose said, “I think na-iron out na ang kanilang differences.” (I think they have ironed out their differences.)

This happened two days after Duterte criticized Obama over Washington’s criticism of extrajudicial killings in the Philippines. 

The ASEAN Summit is the first international meeting that Duterte is attending as chief executive. – Rappler.com

Paterno Esmaquel II

Paterno R. Esmaquel II, news editor of Rappler, specializes in covering religion and foreign affairs. He obtained his MA Journalism degree from Ateneo and later finished MSc Asian Studies (Religions in Plural Societies) at RSIS, Singapore. For story ideas or feedback, email him at pat.esmaquel@rappler.com.