World

VIENTIANE – Barack Obama briefly met with Philippine leader Rodri days after the Philippine leader branded the US President a “son of a whore”.

A White House official said the pair exchanged “pleasantries” in a “brief discussion” before dinner.

The encounter took place just before a dinner during a summit of regional leaders in Laos, officials indicated.

Awkward moment when Obama met Philippine leader
Awkward moment when Obama and Philippine leader exchanged a look

“They met at the holding room and they were the last people to leave the holding room. I can’t say how long they met,” Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay, travelling with Duterte, told reporters shortly afterwards.

While a Philippine spokesman said he was “very happy” it happened, the US side revealed that they had a “brief discussion” in a pre-meal “hold space” for leaders.

Earlier On Tuesday, Mr Obama had cancelled planned talks after the abusive slur from Duterte.

Duterte’s outburst came after at a press conference where he told reporters he would not accept Mr Obama raising any concerns about the war on drugs in the Philippines.

“You must be respectful. Do not just throw away questions and statements. Son of a whore, I will curse you in that forum,” Duterte said.