Duterte: PH to soon receive 5,000 firearms from a 'friendly country'

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 27) — The country will soon receive thousands of firearms from a "friendly country," President Rodrigo Duterte said Monday.

"Despite the boycott sa America of our needs, we are getting some firearms somewhere," Duterte said during the inauguration of a shooting range in Davao City.

He did not, however, say where the arms are coming from, and if these were donated or bought.

"I am not at liberty to divulge it but in the next few days we will have about 5,000 more shipment coming from a friendly country," the President said.

Russia earlier donated 5,000 AK-74M Kalashnikov assault rifles with 1 million rounds of ammunition to the Philippines. The Kalashnikov is a renowned brand of Russian weapons named after Mikhail Kalashnikov, who invented the original Kalashnikov in 1947. It was considered the most popular assault rifle in the world.

READ: Gov't: Russia donating weapons, military equipment for PH counter-terrorism  

The government has said these rifles will be used for the government's counter-terrorism efforts.

In November 2016, Duterte floated Russia as a possible arms supplier for the Philippine National Police after he canceled an order for 26,000 assault rifles from the U.S.

Duterte scrapped the firearms deal following reports that the U.S. State Department is canceling the sale after a senator expressed concern over the human rights situation in the Philippines.

In June 2017, China also donated 3,000 rifles and ammunition to assist the Philippine government in its fight against Maute terrorists in Marawi.

READ: China donates P169 million worth of military hardware to the Philippines