Duterte arrives in Moscow for official visit
MOSCOW, Russia — President Rodrigo Duterte arrived here early Wednesday morning to for his official visit where he is scheduled to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin and witness the signing of several bilateral agreements.
Duterte’s plane touched down Vnukovo Military Base Airport at 3:25 a.m. (8:25 a.m. Manila time).
He was welcomed by Russian officials Andrey Igorevich, Deputy Director of the State Protocol Department and Anatoly Borovik, Deputy Director of the Third Asian Department.
During the President’s visit, he will first meet with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev here and the fly to the easternmost city of Sochi for a bilateral meeting with Putin.
The two leaders will also witness the signing of several bilateral deals covering areas of cooperation such as culture, health, basic research, among others.
While in Sochi, Duterte will speak before a prominent Russian think thank forum.
According to Presidential Protocol Chief Robert Borje, Duterte’s participation will be a first for a Philippine President.
After this, the President will fly back to Moscow to address the Philippines-Russia Business Forum to promote increased trade and investments between the two countries.
On October 5, Duterte will speak before the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, Russia’s top school for diplomats.
He will also meet with the Filipino community in Russia.
Joining Duterte in his official visit are Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr., Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, Agriculture Secretary William Dar, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez, and Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu.
Likewise in the official delegation are Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, Science and Technology Secretary Fortunato Dela Peña, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi, National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon and Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo.
Duterte’s second visit to the two Russian cities from October 1 to 6 will pick up from his first trip to Russia back May 2017 which was cut short due to a terror attack in Marawi City.
This will also be the fourth meeting between the Duterte and Putin.
Duterte had once called Russian President Vladimir Putin his “favorite hero,” as he tried to cement better ties with Russia. /gsg
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