Duterte and Trump, twins?: ‘Medyo pare-pareho kami,’ says Philippine president on US president-elect

MANILA, Nov 10 (Mabuhay) – President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday addressed Donald Trump’s victory in the United States presidential elections publicly for the first time in a speech before the Filipino community in Malaysia.

“Ayaw ko nga sabi ko makipag-away kasi nandiyan na si Trump. But, I would like to congratulate President Trump. Mabuhay ka!” said Duterte, who had previously drawn comparisons to Trump for their off-the-cuff remarks, some of which have resulted in controversy.

Duterte seemed to acknowledge this in his speech.

“Pareho tayo nagmumura. Konting rason lang, mura kaagad. Medyo pare-pareho kami,” Duterte said.

In an earlier statement released by his communications team, Duterte expressed hope for better relations with the US under Trump. Duterte has had a contentious relationship with the US under President Barack Obama, bristling over the criticism of the superpower toward his administration’s drug war.

Duterte once again hit out at the US criticism during his speech.

“Ah ngayon napansin na nila ako,” he said.

“Bakit? Kasi ako lang ang presidente na nag-putang ina sa kanila. Ganoon.”

Earlier in the day, Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said Duterte “looks forward to working with the incoming administration for enhanced Philippines-US relations anchored on mutual respect, mutual benefit and shared commitment to democratic ideals and the rule of law.”

During the campaign, Trump had said Duterte’s tirades against the US showed “a lack of respect for our country.”

In his speech after the polls showed him to be the likely winner, Trump expressed willingness to work with other nations.

“We will get along with all other nations willing to get along with us. We will be. We will have great relationships. We expect to have great, great relationships. No dream is too big, no challenge is too great. Nothing we want for our future is beyond our reach,” Trump said.

“I want to tell the world community that while we will always put America’s interests first, we will deal fairly with everyone, with everyone. All people and all other nations. We will seek common ground, not hostility; partnership, not conflict.”(MNS)

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