Is it too late now to say sorry for President Rodrigo Duterte

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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte expressed regret on today for an outburst against |President Barack Obama in which he called him a ‘son of a wh**e’.

“While the immediate cause was my strong comments to certain press questions that elicited concern and distress we also regret it came across as a personal attack on the US president,” a statement released by Duterte said. The US and Philippine leaders were due to meet later today in the Lao capital of Vientiane at a gathering organized by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

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President Obama pulled out of holding a bilateral meeting after Duterte launched a tirade against him ahead of the visit during a yesterday’s press conference. The acid-tongued former prosecutor on yesterday warned he would not be lectured by Obama over concerns about a brutal war on crime that has claimed more than 2,400 lives in the Philippines.

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“You must be respectful. Do not just throw away questions and statements. Son of a wh**e, I will curse you in that forum,” Duterte told reporters when asked about his message for Obama. In President Duterte’s statement today in Laos struck a much more conciliatory tone, saying both sides would hold face-to-face talks “at a later date”. “Our primary intention to chart an independent foreign policy while promoting closer ties with all nations especially the US with which we have a long-standing partnership,” the statement said.

“We look forward to ironing out differences arising out of national priority perceptions and working in mutually responsible ways for both countries.

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We certainly hope that he thinks before he acts next time.

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