The President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte admitted that he did not attend the meeting at a regional summit in Laos, because he wanted to avoid the "awkward position" U.S. President Barack Obama.
"I was there. I attended meetings, actually," he said to the representative of the business forum on Monday night in Manila. "But you know, Obama was there, and because we had exchanged a couple of sentences, I was just trying to avoid an awkward situation." Before the summit began, Duterte called Obama "son of a bitch", this prompted the White house to cancel the planned bilateral talks between the two leaders.
At that time, the counselor Jesus Dureza reported that the President Duterte "not feeling well" so he had to miss a meeting between the United States and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in September. "I don't know if he took my handshake," said Duterte. "Because I didn't want to create an awkward situation, I just left."
Obama has previously expressed concern about the controversial war Duterte against drugs and human rights. "We Express our concern about some recent statements of the President of the Philippines," he told reporters the White house adviser on national security Deputy Ben Rhodes on the eve of the summit.
sections: Politics, World News, Accidents