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Trump, Putin shake hands but no formal meeting expected

Trump, Putin shake hands but no formal meeting expected

Trump was in the Philippines to attend the Association of Southeast Asian Nations conference and the East Asia Summit.

On Sunday, he tried to have it both ways, saying he believes both the US intelligence agencies when they say Russia meddled and Russian President Vladimir Putin's sincerity in claiming that his country did not.

Duterte said past year he would be "happy to slaughter" three million drug addicts and branded then U.S. president Barack Obama a "son of a whore" for criticising the drug war. "And also I think Mr. Trump is, for whatever reason, either intimidated by Mr. Putin, afraid of what he could do or what might come out as a result of these investigations", Brennan said. The next day Trump and Duterte meet one on one.

Trump also teased a "major statement" on trade and the trip later this week at the White House, where he is expected to promote congressional Republicans' plan to overhaul the nation's tax code.

Brennan said Trump's ambiguity on Russia's involvement was "very, very worrisome from a national security standpoint".

Phelim Kine, Human Rights Watch deputy Asia director, told Agence France Presse Trump and other world leaders should not copy their controversial host's signature fist salute as this could land them in hot water.

President Donald Trump is heading back to Washington following a lengthy tour of Asia that he declared "tremendously successful".

When he came into office in June 2016, Duterte ordered the police and military to violently root out criminals and drug users and sellers, but instead of arrests and prosecutions, there were thousands of extrajudicial killings. And nearly all of them also have the same problem.

"Every time he sees me, he says: 'I didn't do that.' And I believe - I really believe - that when he tells me that, he means it", Trump said, arguing that it makes no sense for him to belabour the issue when Russian Federation could help the US on North Korea, Syria and other issues.

He at times denies inciting police or others to kill, but also consistently generates headlines for his abusive language and incendiary comments defending the drug war.

He urged the region to reshape its trade deals to America's liking, declined to spotlight violent human rights abuses and cranked up pressure on North Korea.

Duterte believed Obama was "oblivious to the actual threat presented by drugs in the Philippines", the spokesman declared.

"Forget what they say, those human rights (activists)".

Karapatan secretary-general Cristina Palabay said it was hypocritical for the two to even discuss the topic given their tracklist of human rights violations. "So madaling kausapin because they're also suffering from the same the scourge with drugs", Duterte said. "How much more now that I am president?"

Trump, on the other hand, has embraced Duterte - with a senior administration official saying before the trip that "there's a warm rapport there". Duterte, however, made it clear that he won't welcome any discussion on human rights lest he will tell the United States leader to "lay off".


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