God told me to stop swearing: Duterte?
Duterte has previously abused Pope Francis, called Obama 'son of a bitch' and referred to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as 'devil'. Photograph: (AFP)
Philippines's outspoken president, Rodrigo Duterte, has promised to stop swearing after a series of controversial remarks in the past, international news agency Reuters reported.
He said that God spoke to him on a flight from Japan on Thursday, warning him the plane would crash if he kept using bad language.
"I was looking at the skies while I was coming over here ... everybody was asleep, snoring, but a voice said that, 'you know, if you don't stop epithets, I will bring this plane down now'," Duterte said at a news conference late on Thursday upon arrival in his home city of Davao, the international news agency reported.
"And I said, 'who is this?' So, of course, it's God. OK.
Duterte has previously come under fire for cursing Pope Francis and US President Barack Obama. He has now said that God told him to clean up his act.
"So, I promise God ... not to express slang, cuss words and everything."
Duterte won by a huge margin in the May election in the Philippines, which is predominantly Roman Catholic.
He called Obama 'son of a bitch' and used the same words for cursing Pope. He also told Obama to "go to hell", called UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon a "devil" and said "fuck you" twice to the European Union, while raising his middle finger.
Duterte's campaign against the illegal drug trade in the Philippines has also garnered international attention triggering criticism from several human rights organisations. He pledged to kill thousands of criminals when he was voted to power.
(WION with inputs from Reuters)