US President Barack Obama on Tuesday congratulated Philippines president-elect Rodrigo Duterte on his landslide victory at the polls.
In the call with Duterte, the White House said in a statement that the two leaders affirmed their interest in seeing the relationship continue to grow on the basis of these shared principles. The 71-year-old Duterte has previously said that it is up to American officials to fix relations with him. Duterte has also indicated that he was prepared to hold direct talks with Beijing over a sensitive territorial dispute in the South China Sea. Duterte takes over as president on June 30.