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Galit sa UN? Duterte sends Cayetano to talk to Secretary General Guterres

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While President Rodrigo Duterte was busy talking to world leaders left and right Monday (November 13), Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano met with United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte skipped the ASEAN-UN Summit because he had a “full schedule,” which included bilateral meetings with Japan, Republic of Korea, India, and Russia.

“The President’s meetings went beyond schedule and, to avoid further delay, it was decided that Secretary Cayetano would attend the ASEAN-UN Summit on behalf of PRRD while the Chief Executive was conducting meetings with other leaders,” Roque said in a statement.

While Duterte’s decision was understandable, some pundits can’t help but wonder if his snub was a reflection of his lukewarm view of the UN.

The President has slammed the UN over its concern for human rights in connection with the drug-related killings happening under the administration.

He has threatened to burn the UN, and said the international body should shut up because the Philippines is one of the countries which pay for the salaries of its officials.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein called out Duterte in September last year for his supposed “lack of understanding of our human rights institutions and the principles which keep societies safe.”

Agnes Callamard, UN’s special rapporteur for extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, has said she wants to investigate the extrajudicial killings happening under Duterte’s watch.