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Palace on Duterte remark vs EU: He’s emphasizing PH sovereignty

By: - Reporter / @NCorralesINQ
/ 05:15 PM March 28, 2017

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Malacañang on Tuesday justified the remarks of President Rodrigo Duterte against the European Union (EU), saying the chief executive was only telling the 28-member block not to interfere in the country’s domestic affairs.

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The EU has summoned the Philippine envoy in Brussels after Duterte threatened its officials for opposing his efforts to restore the death penalty.

“I will just be happy to hang you. If I have the preference, I’ll hang all of you,” Duterte said during his arrival statement after his visit to Myanmar and Thailand.

Asked to explain Duterte’s remarks, Presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella said it was said in the context of “non-interference with the national sovereign affairs” of the Philippines.

“Simply because he said that, you know, he felt that they were impinging, infringing on own national sovereignty to be able to deal with their own situations,” he said in a Palace briefing on Tuesday.

The Palace official said Duterte’s statement should be understood more than its literal meaning.

“I’m sure by this time we understand that it’s more than being literal. He basically speaks about an attitude of, you know, emphasizing that we should be left alone to be able to do our part,” he said.

Despite the resident’s tirades against the EU, Abella said the country’s relationship with the political union “is quite excellent.”

The EU has earned the ire of Duterte for calling the extrajudicial killings under his administration and for its call to release detained Senator Leila de Lima. JE

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TAGS: Duterte, EU, Europe, European Union, Palace, remark, sovereignty, statement
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