Duterte orders halt to purchases of Canada choppers, United States weapons

Champagne orders review of controversial helicopter deal with the Philippines

Palace: We can look elsewhere for military choppers

"We respect the stand of Canada", he said.

According to a report, the Philippines signed a deal with Canada on February 7 for the sale of 16 combat utility choppers worth $233.36 million, or roughly P12 billion pesos.

"I want to tell the armed forces to cut the deal, and somehow we will look for another supplier", Duterte said.

"If they don't want to sell, we may consider the prospect of procuring them from other sources", Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, Jr. said on Thursday.

Duterte said his country has the right to deploy the helicopters as it wishes."Invariably (these helicopters) will be used against the rebels and terrorists". "And we will obviously review the facts and take the right decision", Champagne told reporters, without giving more details.

He added that the Canadian government will make sure any deal entered into by the their government are "abiding by the rules and expectations that are not just values, but actual rules that the Canadian government has to follow".

But it is also the latest to spark concerns from human-rights and arms-control groups, who have previously raised red flags about recent Canadian arms deals with Saudi Arabia, Colombia and other destinations.


President Rodrigo Duterte's spokesman warned Manila may walk away from the deal in light of the controversy.

The Philippines employs attack helicopters and planes to support ground troops battling militants in the Muslim south, as well as against communist guerrillas in other parts of the mainly Catholic Asian nation.

The Bell H-13 Sioux, a variant of the Bell 47, was the first helicopter to enter into service with the Philippine Air Force in 1955, Bell said.

"Not at all. They are purely for utility purposes - ergo, transport purposes especially during HADR operations", he said, using a military term for disaster response.

The Canadian leader was praised by human rights groups for raising the concerns, but Duterte said he was insulted and angered by the remarks.

The Canadian PM said Duterte has been receptive to comments regarding his government's crackdown on drug dealers that had claimed several lives.

"President Duterte's government has achieved global notoriety for its blatant disregard of basic human rights and its systematic threats against human rights activists", Jaramillo said in an email.

Latest News