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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte delivers a statement prior to his departure for Cambodia and Singapore for official visits to the ASEAN neighbors, Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016, at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay city, south of Manila, Philippines. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

The president of the Philippines admitted to killing criminal suspects himself


Rodrigo Duterte is no stranger to controversial statements, and he's even offered medals to civilians who shot drug dealers.

On Monday, hours after saying "I am not a killer" at an awards speech, the Philippines president admitted to killing criminal suspects himself while mayor of Davao, the BBC reports. He said he patrolled the city looking for fights where he could kill suspects, to show police they could do the same.

Hitler massacred three million Jews... There's three million drug addicts. I'd be happy to slaughter them.
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte

Duterte has been widely criticized for escalating the war on drugs in the Philippines. More than 5,000 people have been killed by police and vigilantes since his election in May.

Duterte has not been fazed by the criticism. He has said he does not care about human rights, Al Jazeera reports.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte addresses army troopers during his visit to its headquarters in suburban Taguig city east of Manila, Philippines Tuesday Oct. 4, 2016. U.S. and Philippine forces opened their first large scale combat exercises under President Duterte in uncertainty Tuesday after he said the drills will be the last in his six-year presidency partly to avoid upsetting China.(AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

Duterte has contradicted himself on his role in the Davao's "death squads," alternately saying that he was involved and that he was not involved, The Guardian reports.

He has criticized President Obama publicly and avoided meeting with him.

His most recent remarks drew heated criticism.

Oust me - good. Assassinate me - better. I have this migraine every day.

Duterte also recently told the press he "might not be around" for the end of his six-year term. He is 71 and suffers from migraines, back pain and Buerger's disease, a condition of the blood vessels that is often tied to smoking.

He also said he "did not need [the presidency] at his age" but didn't regret running, Reuters reports.

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