Duterte lauds envoy for enhanced PH-Russia defense ties in farewell call
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte congratulated outgoing Russian Ambassador to the Philippines Igor Khovaev for his contribution in deepening defense ties between Manila and Moscow as the envoy made his farewell call on Wednesday in Malacañang.
Duterte commended Khovaev for “facilitating confidence-building activities between Philippine and Russian defense establishments through exchange of goodwill naval visits and training of Philippine law enforcement personnel, among other joint activities,” according to a Palace statement.
Duterte conferred on Khovaev the Order of Sikatuna, with the rank of Datu (Grand Cross), Gold Distinction.
Khovaev, for his part, reiterated Russia’s commitment to continue building a long-term partnership with the Philippines.
The Russian envoy also identified areas of growth, including trade and investment, security, and public health, specifically the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Khovaev also thanked the President for the “positive momentum” of Philippines-Russia relations capped by multiple meetings between Duterte and President Vladimir Putin.
Duterte made official visits to Russia in May 2017 and October 2019.
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