The 71-year-old leader, who will remain mayor of Davao City until he is sworn in as president on June 30, told journalists on Thursday evening that they “think too much of themselves.”
Duterte has come under fire for his recent suggestion that members of the press are not protected by freedom of expression laws. “Just because you’re a journalist, you are not exempted from assassination if you are a son of a bitch,” he said at a press conference on Tuesday, where he also got into trouble for catcalling a female reporter.
At least 77 journalists have been killed in the Philippines since 1992, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. More than 60 percent of those killed were political reporters.
Duterte’s threatening comments prompted Reporters Without Borders to call for legal action against the future president and urge the Philippine media to boycott his press conferences until he apologizes.
“You idiots do not threaten me,” he said Thursday, daring reporters to stop covering him. “Make this trip your last in Davao City.”
For reasons that aren’t quite clear, the United Nations also fell victim to the incoming president’s profanity-loaded rant on Thursday.
“That’s the trouble here, they’re always raising fears about this or that United Nations convention,” Duterte snapped when asked an unrelated question about the foreign media. “[The U.N.] can’t even solve the Middle East carnage … couldn’t even lift a finger in Africa … shut up, all of you.”
Duterte is no stranger to bad press. He drew international condemnation for saying he would have liked a turn raping a “beautiful” missionary who was gang raped and murdered in a prison riot in Davao City.
Confronting backlash from senior members of the Catholic Church on Monday, Duterte’s response was short but not so sweet: “Don’t fuck with me.”