China's Xi urges restraint on N. Korea in call to Duterte

Trump invites Philippines' Duterte to the White House

Reince Priebis recently stated that Donald Trump's invitation to the Philippines president is a true sign that the issues developing out of North Korea are serious and that Trump is reaching out and trying to make strong allies.

Trump and President Rodrigo Duterte had a "friendly discussion" Saturday that also addressed regional security in Southeast Asia and the Philippines' drug war, the White House said in a statement. "I am supposed to go to Russian Federation, I am supposed to go to Israel", the social-butterfly strongman told reporters, according to Agence France-Presse.

"By welcoming Duterte to meet with him in the White House, Trump risks giving Duterte's actions - and his brutal human rights violations - an American stamp of approval".

The North Korea crisis was also raised.

But his effort was stymied by human rights concerns, particularly in Thailand and the Philippines.

As Asean chairman, he last week said he would urge Mr Trump not to be provoked by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, warning of a catastrophe if the situation intensified and that Mr Kim "wants to end to the world".

As reported on May 1 by The New York Times, the initiative of the USA president was a complete surprise for these departments.

As recently as December, Duterte threatened to end his country's relationship with the USA when he believed the us had ended aid over human rights concerns.

When advance word came out that President Barack Obama planned to criticize Duterte in a one-on-one meeting, he called the president a "son of a bitch", and the encounter was canceled.

Despite the friendly invite, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte says he may have to wash his hair on the day that he was asked to visit the White House.

In December, Duterte said that in a phone call, Mr. Trump praised his anti-drug crackdown.

Duterte has said his administration does not back extrajudicial killings, although he has repeatedly threatened drug suspects with death and violence in nationally televised speeches.

Priebus made clear that North Korea was the top priority.

"I'm tied up", he told reporters Monday in southern Davao city.

In his phone conversation with Trump, Duterte said he relayed the region's alarm over the North Korean standoff. A White House readout of Saturday's Duterte call credited his government for "fighting very hard to rid its country of drugs".

"He was wishing me success in my campaign against the drug problem", he said at the time.

Duterte's White House welcome sounded an immediate alarm with the watchdog group Human Rights Watch, whose Asia division deputy director condemned the move in a blistering statement.

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