MANILA, May 22 (Xinhua) -- Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte left for Russia on Monday to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin to chart the future of Philippine-Russian relations.
In a speech before boarding his plane at the Davao City international airport, Duterte said he would meet Putin and Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in Moscow "to discuss ways of charting the future direction of our partnership across many areas."
"We will exchange views on regional and international issues to determine how we can best advance our shared interests," he said.
Duterte said cooperation between Manila and Moscow opened 40 years ago but "it has opened ever so slightly."
"There is much room to develop mutually beneficial cooperation. There are many opportunities that needed to be explored. Now we can work together to open those even wider," Duterte said.
"This is a strategic oversight that has led to many missed opportunities for our country. I am determined to correct this," Duterte said.
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