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Duterte to make calls, look into US Embassy dispersal

BEIJING—President Rodrigo Duterte will personally look into the violent dispersal of anti-US protesters in from of the US Embassy in Manila.

Duterte, who declared during the campaign period that he would be the country's first leftist President, said he would start making phone calls tonight.

However, Duterte said he would not make any announcement as regards the matter until his return to the Philippines later this week.

Duterte is in China for a four-day state visit and bilateral talks with Chinese leaders.

“I will have to investigate. I'll have to make calls tonight. But just to be very sure that I do not commit or I do not stray along other side issues. I will just wait for the official announcement to make upon my arrival," Duterte said in a news conference.

"By that time I would have completed my assessment, personal, which will be provided by the police and the military. And, of course... the DILG [Department of the Interior and the Local Government],”  he added.

Duterte over the recent weeks criticized the US after American leaders, including US President Barack Obama, expressed concern over the alleged extrajudicial killings blamed on Duterte's war on drugs.

The President has also announced the end to joint military exercises with the US under his term.

Duterte said he would get a report on the violent dispersal from Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea.

“I am not going into blame-game. I am not going into the blame-game as a start,” Duterte said.

"Whether it is a friendly of a not so friendly embassy all over the world, we are bound by international rules and that we have to allow the establishment of embassies especially if you have citizens in that country to protect," he added.

Duterte said he had given the PNP orders to implement maximum tolerance in dealing with protesters.

“I have given my orders for a maximum tolerance policy sa pulis let them...I said early on: if you want to demonstrate tell me. I'll give you a permit for one week just do not invade the Constitutional orders of the right also to use the streets and be safe,” Duterte said. —