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Trump's attendance in November Asean meet likely

Trump's attendance in November Asean meet likely”

Paynor said that while security measures have been in place, officials in charge for Asean summit are also considering Duterte's instruction to maintain "normal flow of daily activities" in Manila during the four-day long Asean meetings.

"As of now, President Trump, for instance when President (Rodrigo) Duterte called him up to congratulate him had already indicated that he was coming in November", said Malacañang's chief protocol officer Ambassador Marciano Paynor.

If Trump shows, the ASEAN summit could be the first time Trump meets with Duterte.

Duterte had a hard relationship with Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama, as the former United States president criticized a series of killings tied to the Philippines leader's Drug War, prompting Duterte to tell Obama to "go to hell", calling him a "son of a whore", - for which he later apologized - and threatening that he might "break up with America".

At least 52 meetings, including an annual gathering of ASEAN foreign ministers on central Boracay Island in February, have been held without any incident, Cuy said.

For his part, Duterte, however, said he was not sure whether Trump would visit the Philippines.

ASEAN, which is marking its golden anniversary this August, groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

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"Si Trump, I don't know. If he is coming it would be good for the country, for all of us", the President told reporters in Bohol.

"Multilateral meetings of this sort, we usually expect 100 percent attendance", Paynor added.

On another matter, Mr. Duterte might visit South Korea, an ASEAN dialogue partner, in the "second half of this year" - according to the Korean newspaper Maeil Business News Korea which cited Korea Importers Association (KOIMA). "Numerous leaders who do not attend do so because of internal issues", although "one or two" leaders may not be able to attend.

The Indonesian president is expected to attend the launch of the Davao-General Santos-Bitung roll-on, roll-off route in Davao City on April 30.

The East Asia Summit groups 18 countries including Asean member states, the US, Russia and China.

He said President Duterte may have "pull-aside" meetings with the other leaders.



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