Malacañang announced on Monday that President Rodrigo Duterte will travel to Malaysia next week to meet with Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad after the Manny Pacquiao-Lucas Mathysse fight.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Duterte and the newly-elected Prime Minister had talked over the phone before the start of Monday’s Cabinet meeting.
Roque said Duterte and Mahathir wanted to discuss about insurgency and terrorism, particularly the Islamic State or ISIS.
“Had telephone talk with Mahathir before cabinet meeting. He wants to talk about insurgency and ISIS. We will be there July 16. After boxing, we will talk with Mahathir,” Roque quoted Duterte as saying.
Pacquiao, a Filipino boxing superstar and an incumbent senator, is set to fight Argentinian Mathysse for the WBA welterweight title on July 15 in Kuala Lumpur.
The boxer-turned-lawmaker is Duterte’s political ally, who also hailed from Mindanao.
Duterte had recently credited Malaysia’s economic progress to Mahathir’s previous leadership.
Mahathir served as Prime Minister from 1981 to 2003.
Last May, the 92-year-old Mahathir was elected anew as Prime Minister. PNA