I Am Learning to Say No

President Corazon Aquino receives visitors in the second-floor bedroom of a guesthouse at Malacaang Palace. Last week, when the new leader welcomed TIME's Hong Kong bureau chief Sandra Burton, a close observer of Aquino's career since their first meeting more than two years ago, the President was in her office with her daughter and personal secretary nearby. Discussing her first twelve weeks in power, Aquino was as animated and forthright as ever. Excerpts from their talk:

On relations with the U.S. I am a little disappointed, to tell you the truth. My feeling is that I am still being watched and...

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