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President Duterte said Thursday night that his three-day official visit to Japan was a huge success, citing the “productive” meetings that he had with Japanese officials led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
Duterte described his trip as another “defining moment” in Philippines-Japan ties in a speech after his arrival at the Davao City international airport.
His meetings in Tokyo, the Chief Executive added, were “productive” with specific gains in various areas of economic, socio-political security, and defense cooperation.
“I discussed with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in full detail the state of Philippines-Japan ties and we identified points of collaboration that will lead to a common path towards the achievement of shared objectives,” Duterte said.
According to the President, the Philippines and Japan have reaffirmed their commitment to the rule of law and freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.
“As countries that share the values of democracy, adherence to the rule of law and peaceful settlement of disputes, the Philippines and Japan agreed to work closely to advance the rules-based regime to maintain stability and security in our region,” Duterte said.
Meanwhile, Duterte announced that he would visit Malaysia to discuss maritime security, particularly the issue of piracy. “After this, I have to talk to…Malaysia. I am going there to complete the tour because those are the only countries that would really matter to me,” Duterte said.
So far, the President has visited Laos, Indonesia, Vietnam, Brunei, and China.
“Malaysia because we have the Malacca Strait, we have this piracy going on every now and then. It puts to shame everybody,” he said. “It’s high time that I talk to …Prime Minister Najib (Razak). We have to do something about it,” Duterte added. (Elena L. Aben)