Staunch Rodrigo Duterte critic Senator Antonio Trillanes IV had a comeback statement on the Palace’s remark and some Duterte online supporters’ treason claims on Monday.
“Nagtraydor daw ako sa bayan dahil nakipag-usap ako kay US Sen. Marco Rubio kahit pa sinabi na niya mismo na PH-US (United States) alliance, corruption and human rights situation ang pinag-usapan namin [Some claim that I betrayed the country just because I talked with Senator Marco Rubio even though he already said that we discussed PH-US alliance, corruption and human rights situation],” Trillanes said in a statement.
“Ano naman ngayon ang tawag sa mga protector ng isang presidenteng pumatay at nagpapatay ng mga Pilipino, mga bayani? Pwede ba, umayos kayo (Then what do you call the protectors of a president who kill and order the killing of Filipinos? Heroes? Please give me a break)!” Trillanes added.
In an interview with DZMM, Presidential Communications Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar, when asked Trillanes should be charged with treason, said, “We have to study this first. It’s hard to make hasty pronouncements.”
Because of his trip to the US, the Senator made headlines last week, earning statements from the Senate President and from Malacañang as well.
Senator Aquilino Pimentel denied knowing Trillanes’ motive and commented that promoting the country’s best interest should be practiced. “I hope no one else is wishing, or worse, working for ‘bad’ relations between PH and other countries like US and EU (European Union) members, he said.”
Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella, on the other hand, said, “We do hope the correct information is given and not biased information designed to adversely affect Philippines-US relations.”
Rubio, in a tweet, confirmed that he met with Trillanes to discuss the two countries’ ties and situation. Trillanes has also clarified on Friday that his trip to the US did not include stopping US President Donald Trump’s visit to the Philippines.
Rubio and Senator Benjamin Cardin filed a bipartisan bill before which seeks to restrict arms sale to the Philippine National Police (PNP) in relation to Duterte’s war against illegal drugs.