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AHEAD OF NOKOR ENVOY'S VISIT

Duterte calls North Korea’s Kim Jong Un ‘tarantado, buang’


President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday once again slammed North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un, calling him "tarantado" and "buang" due to his tendencies to trigger a nuclear war that could turn Asia into an arid land.

"Baka nga itong si Kim Jong Un, itong tarantado, you know if that guy — I do not think he is ready, but he is playing with dangerous toys, iyang buang na iyan," he said at the 113th founding anniversary of the Bureau of Internal Revenue.

"That chubby face that looks kind. That son of a bitch. If he commits a mistake, the Far East will become an arid land. It must be stopped, this nuclear war," he added.

The President further said: "A limited confrontation and it blows up here, I will tell you, the fallout can deplete the soil, the resources and I don't know what will happen to us."

A leaked transcript of Duterte and United States President Donald Trump's phone call, the Filipino President called Kim "this generation's mad man." Duterte previously said that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations was worried about his missile launches.

Duterte's comments come days before North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Su-yong's scheduled attendance at the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting in Manila this week.

This year, Duterte is chairman of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN). On Monday, his foreign minister will host the ASEAN Regional Forum, which brings together 27 countries that include Australia, China, India, Japan, Russia, North and South Korea and the United States.

North Korea is determined to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting the United States and officials in Washington said Saturday's test of an intercontinental ballistic missile showed it may be able to reach most of the country.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who is due to attend the Manila meeting, on Tuesday said he wanted dialogue with North Korea at some point, stressing it was not the enemy and the United States did not seek to topple the regime.

Since winning the presidency last year, Duterte has been hurling tirades against foreign leaders and prominent individuals, especially those criticizing his administration's controversial anti-drug war.

Among those he called names and hurled expletives at were US President Barack Obama, Pope Francis, and most recently his predecessor former President Benigno Aquino III. — with Reuters/MDM/JST, GMA News

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