Rodrigo Duterte, president of the Philippines, is visiting Japan this week. Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida is hosting a dinner for him on October 25, followed by a more formal bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on October 26, where Abe is expected to sign an agreement to provide additional two patrol vessels to the Philippines. In addition, as an unusual gesture of welcome, Abe will meet Duterte one-on-one in his residence on the night of October 26. Duterte is even scheduled to have a courtesy call meeting with Emperor Akihito on October 27.
Clearly, the Abe government decided to roll out a red carpet for Duterte. To some observers, this is at minimum awkward. Duterte is arriving in Japan after his visit to China, where he received a very warm reception. Since Duterte’s inauguration in June this year, there has been a mounting concern about the future of the U.S.-Philippines alliance, especially given the new president’s outreach to Beijing.
Read the full article on The Diplomat. This article was originally published on October 25, 2016.