Duterte threatens to ship garbage back to Canada

Clay Curtis
April 24, 2019

Canada struck a conciliatory tone in response to Philippine President Duterte's fierce criticism of the North American country's failure to take back garbage it had earlier dumped in the islands.

Dozens of shipping containers filled with Canadian household and electronic garbage has reportedly been rotting in the port for up to six years.

Between 2013 and 2014, a private Canadian company shipped over 100 containers to the Philippines loaded with 2,450 tonnes of garbage.

"Canada is strongly committed to collaborating with the Philippines government to resolve this issue and is aware of the court decision ordering the importer to ship the material back to Canada", said Sabrina Kim in an email to CBC News.

"Let's fight Canada. I will declare war against them". "Our Prime Minister committed and has recommitted to resolving this issue, including taking the waste back to Canada", Holmes said.

"I want a boat prepared".

In 2017 at the end of a summit of Asian and Western nations in Manila, Duterte berated Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for raising questions about his war on drugs.

"Load the containers to a ship, and I will advise Canada that your garbage is on the way".

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In a statement today, Canada's embassy in Manila said officials from both countries were working on issues related to removing the waste "with a view to a timely resolution" and "to ensure the material is processed in an environmentally responsible way".

Canada has been trying for almost six years to convince the Philippines to dispose of the garbage there even though a Filipino court ordered the trash returned to Canada in 2016.

She also mentioned a change to regulations in 2016 meant to prevent such a thing from happening again.

It added that Canada and the Philippines are celebrating this year 70 years of diplomatic relations built on "strong people to people ties, our common interest in strengthening political, economic and cultural relations and in our mutual commitment to peace".

Trudeau said then that the Canadian government had to deal with legal barriers and restrictions that prevented it from taking back the trash, stranded in Manila and in Subic.

But Ottawa has said it had no authority to compel a private shipper to return the shipment to Canada.

"I won't comment on the specific words of the President or his tone but I will say this". "I guess some people believe they are above the law and count on getting away with it".

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