Tillerson Issues Statement Saying the U.S. Has ‘Shared Democratic Values’ With the Philippines

Note: This article contains coarse language that may offend some readers.

On Sunday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson issued the following statement to commemorate the Philippines’ 119th independence day, which is Monday, June 12:

On behalf of President Trump and the American people, congratulations and best wishes to the people of the Republic of the Philippines as you commemorate your 119th independence day on June 12.

The United States proudly stands with the Philippines as a longstanding ally, especially as the country confronts challenges associated with terrorism and extremism, including recent attacks in Marawi City and elsewhere. We admire the resilience and strength of Filipino people in battling adversity and building a more prosperous and secure future.

On this special day, we honor the enduring U.S.-Philippine alliance, built on our shared democratic values, growing commerce, and strong people-to-people ties.

That last line may stand out as odd in light of the widespread allegations that Rodrigo Duterte, the country’s president, has engaged in widespread extrajudicial killings as part of his “drug war.” In a phone call with Duterte, President Donald Trump congratulated him on the “unbelievable job” he’s doing on “the drug problem.”

The Trump administration has yet to address the allegations that Duterte is using his police forces to kill suspected drug users and drug dealers. President Barack Obama criticized Duterte’s alleged actions, only for the Philippines president himself to dub him a “son of a w***e.”

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