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Duterte Softens Tone on U.S. Before South China Sea Talks

  • Meeting with Trump likely to happen later this year: Manalo
  • Philippines to negotiate with Beijing over maritime disputes
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte reviews the honour guard at Fort Bonifacio camp in Manila on April 4.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte reviews the honour guard at Fort Bonifacio camp in Manila on April 4.

Photographer: TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images
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The Philippines appears to be softening its tone toward the U.S. before holding talks with Beijing on the South China Sea.

President Rodrigo Duterte let the insults fly last year, telling former leader Barack Obama to “go to hell” for opposing his drugs war and announcing a “separation from the U.S.” during a trip to Beijing. He also sought to buy more military equipment from Russia.