Philippines' Duterte supports Turkey's desire to join ASEAN

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said he would push for the inclusion of Turkey and Mongolia in a grouping of Southeast Asian nations.

Duterte said leaders of Turkey and Mongolia told him about their desire to join the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) while they were in China over the weekend for a summit on a global trade infrastructure project.

Duterte held separate meetings with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Mongolian Prime Minister Jargaltulga Erdenebat on the sidelines of the summit.

"They want to join ASEAN and since I am now the chair, the Philippines is, they wanted me to sponsor their entry and I said, 'Yes, why not,'" the AFP cited Duterte as saying.

Duterte stressed that Turkey and Mongolia are part of the region.

The 10-member ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

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