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MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine president has threatened to ship containers of garbage back to Canada and dump some at the country’s embassy if Canadian officials don’t take back waste that Philippine officials say was illegally shipped to Manila years ago.

More than 100 containers of household trash, including plastic bottles and bags, newspapers and used adult diapers, were shipped in batches from Canada to the Philippines from 2013 to 2014. Most of the shipping containers remain in ports, sparking protests from environmental activists. Philippine officials said the containers were falsely declared by a private firm as holding recyclable plastic scraps. The officials said they have asked Canada to take the garbage back.

President Rodrigo Duterte raised the issue in a televised meeting with officials late Tuesday after visiting earthquake-hit Pampanga province, north of Manila. He said he was ready to “declare war against” Canada.

“I want a boat prepared. I’ll give a warning to Canada maybe next week that they better pull that thing out or I will set sail to Canada and pour their garbage there,” Duterte said, adding he would ask Canadian officials to “prepare a grand reception.”

“Celebrate because your garbage is coming home,” he said. “Eat it if you want to.”

About five truckloads of the garbage, he added, could be dumped at the Canadian Embassy in Manila.

The Canadian government said through its embassy that it “is strongly committed to collaborating with the government of the Philippines to resolve this issue.”

Print Headline: Canadian garbage raises Filipino’s ire


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