United States president Barack Obama has finally broke silence over President Duterte’s historical visit to China.
On Thursday, Obama said he “somewhat jealous” of how Chinese president Xi Jinping treated Duterte.
Obama,earlier was snubbed by Chinese officials during his state visit to China.
China’s leaders have been accused of delivering a calculated diplomatic snub to Barack Obama after the US president was not provided with a staircase to leave his plane during his chaotic arrival in Hangzhou before the start of the G20.
“The reception that President Obama and his staff got when they arrived here Saturday afternoon was bruising, even by Chinese standards,” the New York Times reported.
Jorge Guajardo, Mexico’s former ambassador to China, said he was convinced Obama’s treatment was part of a calculated snub.
“These things do not happen by mistake. Not with the Chinese,” Guajardo, who hosted presidents Enrique Peña Nieto and Felipe Calderón during his time in Beijing, told the Guardian.
“I’ve dealt with the Chinese for six years. I’ve done these visits. I took Xi Jinping to Mexico. I received two Mexican presidents in China. I know exactly how these things get worked out. It’s down to the last detail in everything. It’s not a mistake. It’s not.”
Guajardo added: “It’s a snub. It’s a way of saying: ‘You know, you’re not that special to us.’ It’s part of the new Chinese arrogance. It’s part of stirring up Chinese nationalism. It’s part of saying: ‘China stands up to the superpower.’ It’s part of saying: ‘And by the way, you’re just someone else to us.’ It works very well with the local audience.
“Why [did it happen]?” the former diplomat, who was ambassador from 2007 until 2013, added. “I guess it is part of Xi Jinping playing the nationalist card. That’s my guess.”
Meanwhile, Chinese President Xi Jinping rolled out the red carpet for President Rodrigo Duterte at the Great Hall of the People ahead of bilateral meetings on Thursday morning.
In a jovial ceremony that started at 1030 a.m. and lasted for around 45-minutes, Chinese honor guards welcomed the visiting Philippine head of state with a gun and canon salute. About a hundred Chinese children waved little flags and flowers for the visiting Philippine leader while a military band played.
This was President Duterte’s very first state visit to China, the fifth country the President had visited since he assumed the presidency in June.