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Trump Says ‘It’s Fine’ If Philippines Quits Military Pact

  • ‘I really don’t mind,’ Trump says about end of 1988 accord
  • Duterte’s move seen as helping improve ties with China
Donald Trump and Mark Esper.
Donald Trump and Mark Esper.Photographer: Chris Kleponis/CNP
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President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he “didn’t mind” that the Philippine government terminated a military agreement with the U.S., a day after Defense Secretary Mark Esper called the decision a “move in the wrong direction.”

“I really don’t mind, if they would like to do that, that’s fine,” Trump said Wednesday during a meeting with Ecuador President Lenin Moreno at the White House. “We’ll save a lot of money. You know my views are different from other people. I view it as, ‘Thank you very much, we’ll save a lot of money.’”