Trillanes declines political asylum in Europe to face legal battles
MANILA, Philippines — At least two countries in Europe have offered former Senator Antonio Trillanes IV political asylum, but the Duterte administration critic said declined the offers to be able to face the numerous charges filed against him by current and previous administrations.
Trillanes made the revelation Wednesday morning, a day after he returned to the Philippines from the United States to post bail in his latest sedition case related to the “Ang Totoong Narcolist” videos, which linked President Duterte’s family and allies to the illegal drug trade at the height of the 2019 midterm elections campaign period.
“Yes, I’ve been offered [political asylum by] at least two countries,” Trillanes said in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel.
He refused to identify the two countries but when asked if these were in Europe, he replied in the affirmative.
The offers were made while he was still in the Philippines and abroad, he added.
“I respectfully declined the offers because we cannot abandon this battle, especially now that we feel we’re actually winning,” he added.
Trillanes said he is currently facing 20 legal charges filed against him, 15 of which he claimed are filed under the Duterte administration, while the rest were revived cases under previous administrations.
He said he never considered leaving the Philippines for good despite the cases he is facing.
“There have been cases filed against me before, I’ll show the public I’m not afraid of these cases filed against me,” the former senator said.
He claimed that the cases are just “tools of a dictator to silence the opposition and instill fear in others.”
He revealed that the support for President Rodrigo Duterte is “declining”, based on their “own internal surveys.”
“I can say that a lot of people have met pro-Dutertes who are converted to anti-Duterte or being neutral and I have yet to encounter somebody who met anyone who used to be anti-Duterte and is now pro-Duterte,” Trillanes said.
“We conduct our own internal surveys and his [Duterte] numbers are declining,” he added.
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