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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte No Stranger to Controversial Statements

Another insult Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte lobbed at President Obama represents one in a long line of controversial statements he has made.
Image: Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte walks between meetings at the ASEAN Summit in Vientiane
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte walks between meetings at the ASEAN Summit in Vientiane, Laos on Monday, Sept. 6.SOE ZEYA TUN / Reuters

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte raised eyebrows across the world yet again on Tuesday, when he said in a speech that U.S. President Barack Obama "can go to hell."

Duterte made the comment in reaction to U.S. criticism over his anti-drug program, which in the past three months has led to the extrajudicial killing of approximately 3,000 people accused of dealing or pushing drugs.

"Instead of helping us, the first to criticize is this State Department, so you can go to hell, Mr. Obama, you can go to hell,” he said.

Related: Philippines' Duterte Tells Obama 'You Can Go to Hell' in New Tirade

This latest outburst was only one in a long line of profanity-peppered, controversial statements Duterte has made.

Just last month he referred to the U.S. president using a Tagalog phrase for "son of a *****.” Duterte later expressed “regret” for the remark. Obama had initially dismissed Duterte’s comment as “colorful” but ultimately decided to cancel their scheduled formal meeting. The two presidents did end up meeting informally in a holding room before attending a gala dinner at a regional summit.

Related: Philippines Drug-War Deaths Double as President Duterte Lashes Out at U.N.

Duterte, a lawyer who was mayor of Davao City before he was elected president in May, has been dubbed by many as "the Donald Trump of the Philippines." But the Washington Post contends Duterte "makes Trump look like Mr. Rogers."

Here are some other “colorful” statements Duterte has made:

‘If Germany had Hitler, the Philippines would have …’

Duterte caused widespread anger last month after comparing his crackdown on drugs to Hitler’s genocide against Jews. "If Germany had Hitler, the Philippines would have ...," he paused and gestured to himself. "Hitler massacred 3 million Jews ... there's 3 million drug addicts. There are. I'd be happy to slaughter them," he said.

A spokesman for the president clarified that his remarks were meant to reject comparisons to Hitler — a tactic often used by his critics. Duterte himself later apologized to the Jewish community, stating “there was never an intention on my part to derogate the memory of the 6 million Jews murdered.”

‘We’ll just leave’ the United Nations

After the U.N. criticized Duterte’s hard-line drug policy, he said the Philippines might just bow out of the organization

“Maybe we'll just have to decide to separate from the United Nations. If you're that rude, son of a *****, we'll just leave you,” Duterte said during a post-midnight news conference in August. “So take us out of your organization, you have done nothing here anyway.”

Image: White House cancelled the scheduled meeting between US President Barack Obama and Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte on the sideline of the on-going ASEAN Summit.
Filipino relatives push a coffin of a slain alleged drug dealer who was killed during a police operation against illegal drugs, into a tomb during a burial rites at a cemetery in Manila, Philippines on Sept. 4. The White House cancelled the scheduled meeting between President Barack Obama and Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte on the sideline of the on-going Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit to discuss the human rights situation in the Philippines.FRANCIS R. MALASIG / EPA

‘I had a feud’ with ‘gay’ U.S. ambassador

After meeting with Secretary of State John Kerry in July, Duterte claimed that he let Kerry know exactly how he felt about the U.S. ambassador to the Philippines, Philip Goldberg.

“We were talking to Kerry, he's OK but I had a feud with his gay ambassador. Son of a *****, I'm annoyed with that guy. He meddled in the elections, giving statements here and there,” Duterte said.

He also revealed that he thought offending the U.S. was the best strategy to get more financial assistance.

“So that Kerry, he came here and we had lunch and he left $33 million with me … I said, 'ahhh this is OK, let's insult them again so this fool will make a compromise,'” Duterte said.

Journalists ‘not exempt from assassination’

"Most of you are clean, but do not ever say all journalists are clean," Duterte said during a press conference in June. "Just because you are a journalist, you are not exempted from assassination if you are a son of a *****."

Duterte later apologized, saying he didn’t condone the killings of journalists.

Image: Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte walks between meetings at the ASEAN Summit in Vientiane
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte walks between meetings at the ASEAN Summit in Vientiane, Laos Sept. 6.JORGE SILVA / Reuters

‘Shoot him and I'll give you a medal.’

Duterte told the public in June that citizens who help him battle crime by killing drug dealers will be rewarded.

“Please feel free to call us, the police, or do it yourself if you have the gun — you have my support," Duterte said. "Shoot him and I'll give you a medal.”

‘When I take Viagra, it stands up.’

Duterte seemed to want to defend his reputation as a womanizer while speaking to business leaders in May, but his rationalization took a bizarre turn when he expressed his affinity for the little blue pill.

“I was separated from my wife. I’m not impotent,” Duterte said. “What am I supposed to do? Let this hang forever,” he asked. “When I take Viagra, it stands up."

The rape joke: ‘What a waste.’

During a campaign rally in April, Duterte spoke of a 1989 incident at a Davao jail in which inmates overpowered the guards and took 15 people, including 36-year-old Australian missionary Jacqueline Hamill, hostage. Hamill was raped and later killed.

“When the bodies were brought out, they were wrapped. I looked at her face, son of a bitch, she looks like a beautiful American actress,” Duterte said.

“I was angry because she was raped, that’s one thing. But she was so beautiful, the mayor should have been first. What a waste,” Duterte continued. The mayor he was referring to was himself.

He also told reporters his daughter was a "drama queen" for raising her own alleged rape.

Duterte later apologized "to the Filipino people" for the initial rape comment, explaining "it's my style, it's my mouth — I said it in the heat of anger."

‘Pope … go home.’

While complaining about the traffic that a papal visit to the Philippines caused, Duterte took his frustration out directly on Pope Francis.

“We were affected by the traffic. It took us five hours. I asked why. They said it was closed. I asked who is coming. They answered, ‘the pope,’” Duterte recalled during a campaign speech in April. “I wanted to call him, 'Pope, you son of a *****, go home. Don't visit here anymore."