Duterte wants Philippines 'released from US shackles'

The Philippines continues its anti-US rhetoric, with the foreign affairs secretary saying the US had never allowed the "little brown brothers" of the Philippines to become truly free.

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte gives a speech in Makati, south of Manila on October 4, 2016.

The president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, wants to release his country from a “shackling dependency” on the United states, the country’s foreign affairs secretary, Perfecto Yasay says.

Yasay has said that President Rodrigo Duterte is obligated to readjust the country’s foreign policy and not surrender to US demands.

"Breaking away from the shackling dependency of the Philippines to effectively address both internal and external security threats have become imperative in putting an end to our nation's subservience to United States' interests," Yasay said in a Facebook post.

Duterte’s tough anti-US stance has echoed since he became president in June.

The Philippines’ president has had an uneasy relationship with US President Barack Obama due to his anti-drug campaign that has left more than 3,000 alleged drug dealers or addicts dead during the past three months.

Earlier this week, Duterte told Obama to “go to hell” in response to the US leader’s criticism of his deadly anti-drug campaign.

On Thursday, Duterte also said if the US and EU was unhappy with his anti-drug crackdown they should revoke their assistance to the Philippines.

According to US data, the Philippines is expected to receive a total of $188 million in 2017 while the country received $236 million in US aid in 2015.

The annual EU assistance to the Philippines is estimated at $65 million. The EU is also supporting the Philippines in achieving peace and security in Mindanao in the country’s south.

The foreign secretary also accused the US of being the reason for his country's weak and underdeveloped military.

The United States has sent the Philippines hundred of millions of dollars in foreign aid and military and development assistance in recent years.

After Duterte’s tangential and fiercely worded speeches in Manila on Tuesday, the US refused to sell missiles and weapons to the Philippines, but Russia and China have said they were willing suppliers.

Duterte has previously declared his intentions to bolster relations with China and Russia, but this time the Philippines will be mindful of the lessons they had learnt from being close to Washington, he said.

Since independence from the United States 70 years ago, it had never allowed the "little brown brothers" of the Phillipines to become truly free, Yasay said.

"Our past mistakes in fostering and strengthening our friendship with our white big brother will be instructive for this purpose," he added.

Source: 
TRTWorld and agencies