Duterte assures Trump of friendship: 'We're okay'

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 20 2017 10:11 AM

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and US President Donald Trump. File/Composite

YANGON, Myanmar - President Rodrigo Duterte said Sunday he was "okay" with his US counterpart, Donald Trump, notwithstanding his tirades against Washington for criticizing his bloody drug war.

Duterte had dialed down on his rhetoric against the US since Trump won the November election, after cursing at Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama.

"Si President Trump, okay kami. Okay kami ni President Trump and I can assure him also of our friendship and cooperation. Walang problema 'yan," Duterte told the Filipino community here.

(President Trump and I are okay and I can assure him also of our friendship and cooperation. We have no problem there.)

"Noong previous president masama ako na tao. Ipapakulong nga ako ng buang eh. Ito naman isa ngayon (Trump), 'tama ka,'" he said.

(For the previous president, I was evil. The crazy man was planning to jail me. This other one, he said, 'You're right.')

Duterte said he is ready to "give all, whatever it is" under the Trump administration -- except for military alliances.

"'Yung sabi ko military alliances, ayaw ko na niyan. Hindi natin kaya eh. Hindi natin kaya. Why do we look for trouble? Bakit maghingi ako ng magpunta-punta ako diyan para makipag-away lang... Huwag tayong maghanap ng away, hanap-buhay lang. Someday but not now," he said.

(I don't want military alliances. We can't do it. Why do we look for trouble. Why would I go there just to pick a fight. Let's not look for a fight. Someday but not now.)