PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte arrived in Moscow on Wednesday, October 2, for a five-day official visit that will include a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin and signing of several bilateral agreements.
Duterte landed at the Vnukovo Military Base Airport at past 8 a.m. (Manila time), Wednesday.
The President was welcomed by Philippine Ambassador to Russia Carlos Sorreta and Russian Ambassador to the Philippines Igor Khovaev.
Duterte is scheduled to hold a bilateral meeting with Putin to discuss ways to further bolster Manila and Moscow’s cooperation on security and defense, against terrorism and violent extremism, and in addressing transnational crimes.
In a pre-departure speech in Manila on Tuesday, October 1, Duterte said he would also take his meeting with Putin as an opportunity to tackle regional and global developments that impact the Philippines and Russia.
The two leaders are also expected to witness the signing of agreements that cover the areas of political cooperation, health, science and technology, and culture.
Duterte is also set to attend the forum of the Valdai International Discussion Club in Sochi with Putin and other leaders.
The President said he would boast at the forum about the Philippines’ independent foreign policy that is “based on respect for sovereignty and non-interference.
He will also meet with Filipino and Russian business leaders in Moscow to encourage more linkages.
The President will also engage academics and students of the Moscow Institute of International Relations University during his stay in Russia.
As has been his practice during his foreign trips, the President will meet with the Filipino community in Russia.
“The visit reaffirms the Philippines’ strong commitment to build a robust and comprehensive partnership with Russia, one that is based on shared interests, pragmatism, and mutual trust and respect,” Duterte said before departing the country on Tuesday.
This is the second time that Duterte flew to Russia. His first visit was in May 2017, but he cut short his trip because fighting broke out in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur. (SunStar Philippines)