MANILA – President Duterte is scheduled to receive an honorary doctorate from the prestigious Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) during his official visit to Russia this week.
This comes after Mr. Duterte, who described himself as a reluctant recipient of awards, earlier turned down an offer from the University of the Philippines to confer him the Doctor of Laws degree.
The award from the MGIMO is the first international honorary degree that the President will receive.
Mr. Duterte is also expected to deliver a policy speech at the MGIMO on Wednesday, May 24, where he is expected to discuss his independent foreign policy. He might also talk about his ideas on how to achieve peace and security, especially in the Asia Pacific region, the Department of Foreign Affairs said earlier.
After his speech, he will have a dialogue with students and donate books to the MGIMO library.
The MGIMO is known as an elite institution for diplomatic training and international relations, according to the DFA.
It has conferred honorary doctorate degrees to foreign politicians, public experts, diplomats and scholars, working in the field of international relations and foreign policy.
President Fidel Ramos, whom Mr. Duterte has credited for urging him to run for President, received an honorary doctorate from the MGIMO in 1997.
The most recent honorary degree awardees were French President Nikolas Sarkozy and Kyrgyzstan Minister of Foreign Affairs Erlan Abdyldaev in 2015.
Among the other recipients of the honorary degree from the MGIMO were United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and international financier and philanthropist George Soros, whom Mr. Duterre had criticised in connection with their human rights advocacies. The late Singapore prime minister and founding leader Lee Kuan Yew was also a recipient of the same award.
Mr. Duterte is scheduled to arrive in Moscow on Monday evening (early Tuesday in Manila).