Duterte causes a stir by calling US envoy ‘gay’
PHILIPPINES President Rodrigo Duterte has sparked a fresh diplomatic row with his colourful language, calling the United States ambassador “gay” in comments that prompted Washington to summon Manila’s envoy to complain.
In the latest of series of tirades, Mr Duterte used a local Tagalog language homophobic slur to express his displeasure with US ambassador Philip Goldberg in televised comments made on August 5.
“As you know, I’m fighting with [US Secretary of State John Kerry’s] ambassador. His gay ambassador, the son of a whore. He pissed me off,” Mr Duterte said.
Mr Duterte, 71, surged to power with a landslide in May following an incendiary campaign in which he gleefully used foul language to disrespect authority figures, from his local political rivals to the pope.
He first came into conflict with Mr Goldberg on the campaign trail, after he said he wanted to rape a “beautiful” Australian missionary who was sexually assaulted and murdered in a 1989 prison riot in Davao, the city he ruled with an iron fist for two decades.
Mr Goldberg and the Australian ambassador both strongly criticised these comments.
“He meddled during the elections, giving statements here and there. He was not supposed to do that,” Mr Duterte said.
The US State Department said that the Filipino charge d’affaires, Patrick Chuasoto, had been summoned on August 8 to discuss Mr Duterte’s comments. –