Philippines

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Duterte: US 'Toned Down' Its Human Rights Concerns

Pentagon may begin airstrikes in the Philippines against ISIS

(Newser) - The US already has a small military force in the Philippines to help in the fight against ISIS, but NBC News reports that the Pentagon might ramp things up by allowing US drones to conduct airstrikes. The strikes would be part of an official military mission that could be unveiled... More »

Philippines Law Would Require Anthem to Be Sung 'With Fervor'

Anyone who fails to do so would face stiff fines, even prison time

(Newser) - Singing the national anthem in the Philippines? You'd better do so enthusiastically. The country's House of Representatives recently approved a bill that would make the singing of the anthem mandatory whenever it is played in public—and also noting that said singing "must be done with fervor.... More »

Philippine Cops: Casino Attacker Was Indebted Gambler

Dismiss ISIS' claims that Friday attack was terror-related

(Newser) - The lone suspect behind a deadly attack on a casino and shopping complex in Manila was a heavily indebted Filipino gambling addict, police said Sunday, bolstering their claim that the assault was not terrorism-related . The man's family confirmed his identity as Jessie Carlos—a married father of three and... More »

Gunman in Casino Attack to Guests: 'Get Out! Get Out!'

Security footage of Philippines rampage released, cops don't think it was terrorism

(Newser) - The gunman in a deadly casino rampage in the Philippines was seen on security camera footage firing his gun in the air, setting fires, and shooting at security forces as he moved through the building during an attack that left at least 38 people dead, the AP reports. ISIS has... More »

Dozens Suffocate in Attack on Philippine Casino

Police say victims suffocated from smoke after gambling tables were torched

(Newser) - A masked gunman stormed a hotel-casino complex in the Philippine capital of Manila early Friday, shooting up a TV screen, torching gambling tables, and stuffing a backpack with casino chips before fleeing, authorities say. Police say 36 people suffocated from smoke after the man set tables ablaze by pouring gasoline... More »

Duterte's Comeback to Chelsea Clinton Jab: Monica Lewinsky

Former first daughter went after leader of Philippines after his comment about rape

(Newser) - Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has denounced the daughter of former President Clinton after she criticized a comment he made about rapes committed by soldiers, the AP reports. Chelsea Clinton had reacted to Duterte's rape comment last week, in which he told troops he would take responsibility for any crimes... More »

21 Killed as Militants Besiege Philippine City

Thousands flee as military sends in tanks

(Newser) - Army tanks packed with soldiers have rolled into a southern Philippine city to try to restore control after militants linked to ISIS launched a violent siege. Thousands of civilians have been fleeing Marawi, a city of some 200,000 people, the AP reports. At least 21 people have died in... More »

Transcript of Trump's Call to Duterte Is Leaked

Praises 'unbelievable job' on drugs, calls Kim a 'madman,' talks about nuclear subs

(Newser) - The Philippines is making headlines on two fronts: First, somebody leaked a transcript of President Trump's phone call to Filipino counterpart Rodrigo Duterte last month. Second, Duterte, already renowned for his brutal crackdown on drugs, is considering imposing martial law nationwide as his troops battle militants linked to ISIS.... More »

Duterte Aims to Wipe Out Smoking in Philippines

25% of the population smokes, but it's now illegal in public

(Newser) - Smokers in the Philippines, look out. President Rodrigo Duterte, notorious for his brutal crackdown on drug users, now wants to wipe out smoking, too. Duterte issued a nationwide executive order Thursday banning smoking in all public places, including sidewalks. CNN reports that smoking was previously banned in schools, clinics, and... More »

The Life of Lola, an American Slave

A Pulitzer Prize-winner's family had a slave for 56 years

(Newser) - When Alex Tizon's family moved to the US from the Philippines in 1964, they were seen as "model immigrants." It's unclear whether their new neighbors would have felt that way had they known Tizon's family was keeping a slave. The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist's final... More »

Trump, Duterte Cozying Up

Leaders want 'warm, working relationship,' in stark contrast to Obama frostiness

(Newser) - President Trump called Philippine leader Rodrigo Duterte and expressed his commitment to their alliance and in developing "a warm, working relationship," a Filipino official said Sunday. Presidential spokesman Ernie Abella said Trump mentioned he was looking forward to visiting the Philippines in November to attend an East Asia... More »

Duterte on Terrorists: 'Give Me Salt, Vinegar, I'll Eat His Liver'

Philippine president's threats apparently know no bounds

(Newser) - Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte warned Sunday that he could be "50 times" more brutal than Muslim militants who stage beheadings and said he could even "eat" the extremists if they're captured alive by troops. Duterte raised his shock rhetoric to a new level as president when he... More »

Philippines: Militant Who Ordered Beheadings Killed

Abu Sayyaf commander was planning more kidnappings

(Newser) - Philippine troops battling militants in a central province killed a key Abu Sayyaf commander who'd been blamed for the beheadings of two Canadians and a German hostage and was apparently attempting another kidnapping mission, the country's military chief says. Gen. Eduardo Ano, the military's chief of staff,... More »

Militants Behead Sailor Who Was Kidnapped Twice

Kantner survived pirate abduction in 2008

(Newser) - A German man who resumed sailing around the world after being released by Somali pirates in 2008 has been murdered by militants in the Philippines who kidnapped him a second time . The extremist group Abu Sayyaf has released video of the beheading of 70-year-old Juergen Kantner, who was kidnapped while... More »

Senator Calls Duterte 'Serial Killer,' Gets Arrested

She's accused of taking bribes from drug lords

(Newser) - A Philippine opposition senator and leading critic of President Rodrigo Duterte's deadly anti-drug crackdown was arrested Friday on drug charges but professed her innocence and vowed she would not be intimidated by a leader she called a "serial killer." Sen. Leila de Lima's arrest came a... More »

People Who Saw This Fish Fear a Quake Is Coming

Multiple specimens of rarely seen sea creature turn up in Philippines

(Newser) - Every couple of years, a mysterious rare fish that resembles a serpent washes up on some beach , generating buzz about the bony sea creature and worries about earthquakes until it fades from memory again. In what National Geographic pegs as a "poorly understood phenomenon," it's happened again,... More »

France Waited 60 Years for This Miss Universe Crown

Iris Mittenaere says she'll help underprivileged kids get an education

(Newser) - A 23-year-old dental student from France won the Miss Universe crown Monday in a pageant held in the Philippines, saying her triumph will make the beauty contest more popular in Europe and help her efforts to put more underprivileged children in school. Iris Mittenaere from Lille city in northern France... More »

Philippines Suspends Drug War for War on Corrupt Cops

Move follows police murder of businessman

(Newser) - The Philippines has suspended its merciless war on drugs in order to "cleanse" police forces of corruption, officials say. The move comes after a killing seen as excessive even in a campaign that has seen at least 7,000 extrajudicial killings, the BBC reports. Officials say Jee Ick-joo, a... More »

150 Inmates Escape in Daring Jailbreak

Islamist rebel campaign has raged for 40 years in Philippines

(Newser) - More than 150 prisoners escaped in a brazen jailbreak in the southern Philippines after a shoot-out between suspected Islamist rebels and guards, Al Jazeera reports. Six inmates and one guard were killed in the firefight on the island of Mindanao, reports the BBC . More than 100 armed men stormed the... More »

As Typhoon Hits, Philippines Dangle Roast Pig to Evacuees

Locals need incentive to leave over Christmas holiday

(Newser) - A powerful typhoon blew ashore in the eastern Philippines on Christmas Day as officials struggled to divert people's attention from celebrations and travel with promises of roasted pigs, reports the AP . Typhoon Nock-Ten packed maximum sustained winds of 114 miles per hour and gusts of up to 158mph—the... More »

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