President Duterte has ordered the pullout of US troops in Mindanao, saying there will never be peace as long as the Americans are in the South.
The President made the statement shortly after presenting photos of the massacre of Filipino Muslims by the US military in the 1900s during the oath-taking of new officials in Malacañang.
“Yung mga Special Forces they have to go. They have to go in Mindanao,” the President said in a speech yesterday.
The President also expressed concern about the safety of the American soldiers in Mindanao, saying they could be targets of murder or kidnap-for-ransom by lawless elements.
“Kapag nakakita ng Amerikano ‘yan, patayin talaga iyan. Kukunan ng ransom iyan, patayin iyan,” he added.
Duterte swore into office 43 newly appointed officials led by nine officials from the Presidential Communications Operations Office.
The PCOO appointees were Undersecretaries George A. Apacible, Noel George P. Puyat, and Enrique L. Tandan III; and Assistant Secretaries Kissinger V. Reyes, Rachel Quennie D. Rodulfo, Joseph Lawrence P. Garcia, Ramon L. Cualoping III, Ana Maria Paz R. Banaag, and Michael Kristian R. Ablan.
Among other appointees sworn into office at the Heroes’ Hall of Malacañang were Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Undersecretaries Navil A. Tan, Diosita T. Andot, and Ronald I. Flores; and Assistant Secretaries Rolando B. Asuncion and Ma. Cecilia D. Papa. (Genalyn D. Kabiling and PNA)