ASEAN leaders might be quiet on what they think about the Philippine leader’s drug war that is condemned by some Western heads – but one thing is certain, they have found a leader that can voice out ASEAN sentiments to the world without fear.
Youtube video by; Elena Grace Flores
[VIDEO]: President Rodrigo Duterte is set to enjoy much-wanted foreign support for his deadly drug war when he hosts Southeast Asian leaders at a Manila summit this week, observers say.
Lauro Baja, a former Philippine foreign undersecretary, and ambassador to the United Nations agreed that ASEAN leaders would back Du30’s drug war while in Manila. They are also expected to at least keep any concerns to themselves. “I expect them to support the efforts of the Philippines to curb the drug menace, period. Without talking about how we achieve that,” Baja said. Even if leaders did disapprove of Duterte’s tactics, they would observe a long-standing ASEAN policy of non-interference in each others’ affairs, he added
Unpredictable Foreign Policy
Du30’s’s unpredictable foreign policy is also another focus at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) event. There is a confusion surrounding his approach to Chinese expansionism in the West Philippine Sea or the South China Sea. That area is closely watched for how. He has shocked the world on his brutal tirades against the United States and the United Nations. This ASEAN Summit is his first major diplomatic event.
Drug War Backing
The mood is likely calmer in Manila for the two-day annual event. The President should enjoy drug war backing from most of his guests and observers for a change. “I sadly expect Du30 e will promote his drug war because he knows there will be no contrary words from the other ASEAN leaders,” Phil Robertson, deputy director of Human Rights Watch’s Asia division, said.
Thai military junta chief Prayut Chan-O-Cha, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei, the leaders of Laos and Vietnam, Cambodia’s Hun Sen, a former Khmer Rouge cadre, and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak are among the heads of states that convene in Manila.