Vientiane (Laos): US President Barack Obama and Philippine leader Rodrigo Duterte had a brief face-to-face encounter, days after a very public spat. On Tuesday Obama cancelled planned talks after the firebrand Duterte called him the ‘son of a bitch.’

Finally, President Barack Obama exchanged ‘pleasantries’ with his Philippines counterpart here on Wednesday as an informal meeting took place before an Asean summit gala dinner, according to a CNN report.

While a Philippine spokesman said he was ‘very happy’ it happened, the US side said they had a brief discussion in a pre-meal ‘hold space’ for leaders.

BBC further reports that Obama and Duterte are said to have entered the dinner venue separately at the summit in Laos, but did not talk with each other during the dinner that lasted one hour and 20 minutes.

“They were the last people to leave the holding room. I can’t say how long they met,” Philippine Foreign Secretary Perfecto Yasay, travelling with Duterte, told reporters shortly afterwards. “I’m very happy that it happened.” A White House official said the pair exchanged ‘pleasantries’ in a ‘brief discussion’ before dinner.

Duterte’s remarks came after at a press conference where he told reporters he would not accept Obama questioning anything about the war on drugs in the Philippines. “You must be respectful. Do not just throw away questions and statements. Son of a bitch, I will curse you in that forum,” Duterte said, apparently in reference to the US president.

Exchanging a look: US President Barack Obama and Philippines President Duterte are said to have entered the dinner venue separately at the summit in Laos and did not interact with each other during the event, which lasted over one hour. However, they were the last people to leave the holding room.