tough talking city mayor dogged by allegations of human rights abuses. But Washington says it will gladly work with Rodrigo Duterte, set to become the next president of the Philippines. It's a sign that for the US, security interests trump other concerns as Beijing continues to ramp up its presence in the South China Sea.
Meanwhile, Duterte is already drumming up ideas on how to resolve messy maritime disputes there. Reuters' Martin Petty says his approach is, let's get together.>> He wants all of the South China Sea claimants, some big powers like the United States, Japan, and Australia to sit down for multilateral talks and to discuss how they can find common ground.
But it's been a zero-sum game for all of the countries involved. None of them have wanted to back down from their stance, and there's been no signs of any concessions or compromise anywhere. China, for example, has outright rejected any kind of forum or multilateral framework, has always insisted on bilateral talks.
>> China's already let the world know what it thinks of that idea. State media saying Beijing's not naive enough to think a new president could ever resolve the disputes. Duterte's other big idea is a huge government overhaul, handing more political power and resources to the provinces.>> It's likely to see a lot of resistance among the political establishment, and even in this election Duterte has gone head on with them.
Big families and big businesses that have long control Philippine politics are looking at the possibility of their power weakening long term.>> Duterte hasn't officially been declared winner just yet, but his two closest rivals have both conceded defeat. He's set to take office at the end of June.