Philippines President Duterte apologises to Obama, regrets personal attack

The leaders were scheduled to meet in Laos at a gathering organised by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

After United States President Barrack Obama called off his meeting with his Filipino counterpart, President Rodrigo Duterte expressed his regrets for his foul-mouthed rant against the American leader.

"While the immediate cause was my strong comments to certain press questions that elicited concern and distress, we also regret it came across as a personal attack on the US President," said Duterte, according to the Straits Times.

On August 5, Duterte, who is often called "The Punisher", described Obama in vulgar terms and said that he won't allow the American leader to jeopardise his anti-drug campaign or lecture him on human rights.

According to Reuters, Duterte said, "Plenty will be killed until the last pusher is out of the streets. Until the (last) drug manufacturer is killed we will continue."

When Duterte was asked about his meeting with US President, he said, "I am a president of a sovereign state and we have long ceased to be a colony."

"Who is he to confront me? As a matter of fact, America has one too many to answer for. Everybody has a terrible record of extrajudicial killings," he added.

Almost 2400 suspected drug peddlers and users have already lost their lives in extrajudicial killings since Duterte came to the power after winning the May election by a landslide on a promise to wipe out drugs and dealers.

However, the United Nations has repeatedly condemned the deaths of the suspected drug dealers and users as a violation of human rights.

Obama cancelled his meeting with Duterte after he came to know about the insult and rescheduled an appointment with South Korean President Park Geun-hye to discuss North Korea's latest missile tests.

"I always want to make sure that if I'm having a meeting, that it's actually productive and we're getting something done," Obama told reporters, according to Today Online.

The leaders were scheduled to meet in Laos at a gathering organised by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations on August 6