US President Donald Trump claimed on Tuesday (14 November) that Air Force One under his predecessor Barack Obama "never got to land" in the Philippines and Twitter roasted him for it. During the last leg of his first trip to Asia-Pacific countries as president, Trump told reporters in Manila that the US now has a "very, very strong relationship with the Philippines", unlike Obama who had a "rough trip" to the Southeast Asian country.
"And as you know, we were having a lot of problems with the Philippines. The relationship with the past administration was horrible, to use a nice word," Trump said. "I would say 'horrible' is putting it mildly. You know what happened. Many of you were there, and you never got to land. The plane came close but it didn't land.
"And now we have a very, very strong relationship with the Philippines, which is really important... So we've accomplished a lot."
Trump seemed to be referring to a scheduled meeting at a regional summit in Laos that Obama cancelled in September 2016 with Philippine President Duterte. Obama cancelled the planned meeting with his Filipino counterpart after Duterte referred to him as a "son of a b**ch."
"Clearly, he's a colourful guy," Obama said at a press conference in China. "And what I've instructed my team to do is to talk to their Philippine counterparts to find out is this, in fact, a time where we can have some constructive, productive conversations."
At the time, more than 2,400 people had been killed since Duterte became president in June 2016.
"We will always assert the need to have due process and engage the fight against drugs in a way that is consistent with basic international norms," Obama had said then. "Undoubtedly, if and when we have a meeting, this is going to be something that's brought up."
According to Human Rights Watch, the number of people killed in the bloody crackdown on drugs in the country has soared to 7,000, many of which are suspected be extrajudicial killings by vigilante groups.
Prior to Duterte's presidency, Obama visited the Philippines in April 2014 when he met then Philippine president Benigno S Aquino III and the two countries signed a new defence agreement. He later visited the Philippines again in November 2015.
Trump told reporters on Tuesday that America's relationship with the Philippines is "probably better than ever before".
"It's very important that we get along with the Philippines, and we really do. We have a very good relationship. I would actually say probably better than ever before," Trump said.
Although this isn't the first time Trump has made what are seen as questionable statements and false claims about Obama, Twitter swiftly proceeded to slam the president over his latest "bizarre" one with many saying he is "obsessed" with Obama.
"This is not normal," one Twitter user wrote. Another added: "He keeps comparing himself to president Obama hoping to look good, but he always comes up short and gets caught in another lie. Needy and sad."
"Is it possible to impeach a president for serial lying?" someone questioned.
"The truth has never been his strong suit," one person chimed.