Philippines’ Duterte tours Russian warship amid warming ties

By on January 6, 2017


Philippines' Duterte tours Russian warship amid warming ties (Photo by Mil.ru, CC BY 4.0.)
Philippines’ Duterte tours Russian warship amid warming ties (Photo by Mil.ru, CC BY 4.0.)

MANILA, Philippines—Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has toured one of the two Russian warships docked in Manila in another gesture of warming ties with Moscow as he shifts his country’s foreign policy away from long-time ally, the United States.

Rear Adm. Eduard Mikhailov, deputy commander of Russia’s Pacific Fleet, and Russian Ambassador Igor Khovaev escorted Duterte and several of cabinet members around the anti-submarine ship Admiral Tributs.

At one point during Friday’s visit, Duterte looked out from the ship’s deck and pumped his fist in the air.

Russia is eyeing naval exercises with the Philippines and deployed the Admiral Tributs and sea tanker Boris Butoma on a five-day goodwill visit to Manila.

Filipinos were allowed to tour the huge ships and Russian marines demonstrated their combat capabilities.