Philippine President Declines Visit to US Due to Visa Denial to Senator
"He said President Duterte that he won't go. He will not go for many reasons, one of them is the refusal of a visa to Senator Ronald de la Rosa", the newspaper quoted the press secretary of President Salvador Panelo. Panelo also added that at the initiative of the head of state, the process of denouncing the agreement between the United States and the Philippines on a simplified visa regime for military personnel will begin. Earlier, Duterte personally promised to terminate the agreement if the senator isn't granted a visa.
According to the newspaper, the refusal of a visa to the senator is seen by the president as Washington’s interference in Manila’s internal affairs. U.S. budget law, signed by President Donald Trump in early January, includes a clause banning Philippine officials from entering the United States in connection with a lawsuit against opposition politician Leyla de Lima. This provision was applied to Senator Ronald de la Rosa.