President Rodrigo Duterte yesterday lashed out at the European Union anew over criticism of his drug war and told EU envoys they could leave the country “in 24 hours.” PPD/File

Duterte to EU envoys: Leave in 24 hours
Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - October 12, 2017 - 4:00pm

MANILA, Philippines — You can leave the country in 24 hours.

President Duterte yesterday lashed out at the European Union anew over criticism of his drug war and told EU envoys they could leave the country “in 24 hours.”

EU Ambassador Franz Jessen said the delegation “continues to operate and function normally, and is committed to working constructively and productively with the Philippines for the benefit of the population.”

Duterte said he hoped a shift to target big networks in his war on drugs would satisfy “bleeding hearts” and Western states fixated on the high death toll in his brutal crackdown.

He let off a slew of profanities at the EU for supposedly seeking the expulsion of the Philippines from the United Nations.

“They threatened us, that they will have us expelled from the UN. My God, do it, stupid. Do it now,” the President said during the inauguration of the newly renovated press briefing room in Malacañang.

“Now, the ambassadors of those countries listening now, tell me. Because we can have the diplomatic channels cut tomorrow. You leave my country in 24 hours. All. All of you,” he said.

The EU has not issued a statement seeking the expulsion of the Philippines from the UN, but a group of European progressives that was portrayed as an official mission of the regional bloc.

Malacañang clarified that Duterte’s statement was directed against the group that “falsely portrayed” itself as an EU mission.

“The President’s expression of outrage is in reaction to statements by a seven-member delegation of the International Delegates of the Progressive Alliance which has falsely portrayed itself as an EU mission,” presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said in a statement.

“This delegation’s irresponsible statements protesting the alleged killings under the Duterte administration demean our status as a sovereign nation. The call of the President for EU ambassadors to leave the country in 24 hours must be taken in this light,” he added.

Jessen told The STAR last night that neither the EU delegation in the Philippines nor EU institutions in Brussels was part of the “organization or planning” of the visit of the Progressive Alliance.

“The statements made by the Progressive Alliance during its visit to the Philippines were made solely on behalf of the Progressive Alliance and do not represent the European Union,” Jessen said.

“The recent visit of the delegation of the ‘International Delegates of the Progressive Alliance’ to the Philippines on 8-9 October was not a ‘European Union mission,’ as falsely reported by some media outlets,” he stressed.

Jessen said the EU and the Philippines “work constructively and productively together in a close partnership in many contexts and areas, including, of course, in the UN context.”

He added that the cooperation covers “a wide range of subjects, including trade, where this year the Philippines made extraordinary progress on its exports to the EU.”

It was not clear if Malacañang was taking back Duterte’s demand for the European ambassadors to leave the Philippines.

“For so long has our President tolerated these undue interferences in our domestic affairs, and he has decided that these must stop if only to preserve the integrity and dignity of our state as a sovereign nation,” Abella said.

Duterte hurled tirades at the EU while he was explaining his memorandum removing the security forces from anti-drug operations.

He said he was hopeful that his memorandum, which also ordered the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency to take charge of the drug raids, would “suffice for the stupid European Union guys.”

Duterte said Russia, China and Southeast Asian countries would not agree to a proposal to remove the Philippines from the UN.

“Bakit? Papayag kaya ang Russia pati China? U*** pala kayo eh (Why? You think Russia and China will agree? You fools). You think China and the rest of the countries of ASEAN will agree to that?” the President said.

“It’s a security council. And you think that China and Russia will allow that? You think we do not know anything about the charter of the United Nations. You think that we are a bunch of morons here. You are the one,” he added.

The President also accused the EU of undermining the deaths of soldiers and policemen involved in the campaign against illegal drugs.

“The most hurtful part was they have cheapened the deaths of my soldiers and policemen,” Duterte said. “You know, they were all focused on how many deaths…

“Why just look at the suspected addicts who were killed? My soldiers mean nothing to them and the thousand other victims who are now hooked on drugs.”

Duterte claimed that 147 policemen, 153 soldiers and one PDEA personnel have died fighting the drug syndicates.

Phl rejects UK aid

The tough-talking leader said the Philippines would carry on even if EU imposes economic sanctions over his crackdown on drugs.

“I will ask China to accept it. China is saying until now, ‘So where’s your fruits? We need the fruits. Where are they now?’ Russia also sent us weapons. They did not ask for payment,” Duterte said.

“We are past the colonization stage. Don’t f*** with us. We ASEAN members can export to each other. We can also have tariff free,” he added. – With Pia Lee-Brago, Reuters

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