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Protests held outside US Embassy ahead of ASEAN summit in Manila

At least 60,000 police officers to secure meeting attended by up to 20 world leaders

Published: November 10, 2017 10:57 AM GMT
Protests held outside US Embassy ahead of ASEAN summit in Manila

Protesters burn photos of US President Donald Trump during a protest rally in Manila on Nov. 10 ahead of the ASEAN summit that will be hosted by the Philippines starting Nov. 13. (Photo by Basilio Sepe)

Activists protested outside the U.S. Embassy in Manila on Nov. 10 ahead of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit, which will be attended by U.S. President Donald Trump.

The protesters demanded a "ban" on Trump, and accused Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte of implementing so-called neoliberal policies dictated by the United States.

In a statement, the fisherfolk group Pamalakaya said Trump's visit will "further imperialist aggression" and consolidate U.S. colonial rule.

Authorities said they would allow protest rallies next week during the summit but only at designated areas.

Former president, now Manila mayor, Joseph Estrada said he will not allow militant groups to go near the site of the ASEAN meetings.

The government has already deployed at least 60,000 police officers to secure the meeting, which is expected to be attended by up to 20 world leaders.

Trump is scheduled to arrive in the Philippines on Nov. 12. He is scheduled to extend his stay in the country to attend the East Asia Summit on Nov. 14.

Foreign activists from at least 14 countries have already arrived in Manila ahead of the ASEAN summit.

Members of the International League of People's Struggles announced on Nov. 10 that they are "all prepared to face Trump's 'fire and fury.'"

The group also slammed Duterte's war against illegal drugs, the reported attacks on tribal communities, and the military's anti-insurgency drive in the rural areas.

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Catholic bishops, meanwhile, expressed hope that the ASEAN meeting will discuss terrorism, which one church leader described as an "urgent issue" that needs to be addressed.

"They should discuss how to combat terrorism as a region," said Bishop Arturo Bastes of Sorsogon.

The prelate said the issue of human rights should also be taken as a priority.

Archbishop Martin Jumoad of Ozamiz said there is also a need to discuss territorial disputes and the peace and order situation in the region

He said these are not only "the most pressing problems" in the region, but are some of the global problems the need "amicable solutions" to avoid world war.

Bishop Honesto Ongtioco of Cubao said "alleviating poverty by empowering the poor" should also be on the agenda.

"Climate change is also a topic that concerns all. They should make decisions how to protect the environment rather than destroy it," said Manila Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo.

Bishop Pabillo said the issue of North Korea's nuclear ambitions as well as the Rohingya refugees should also be a tabled.

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