Philippines President Duterte: I was gay ‘but I cured myself’
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte announces the disbandment of police operations against illegal drugs at the Malacanang palace in Manila, Philippines early January 30, 2017. (REUTERS/Ezra Acayan/File Photo)

"Duterte is gay. So I am gay, I don't care if I'm gay or not."

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte says he used to be gay but was able to "cure" himself. Filipino news publication Rappler reports Duterte "implied during a speech on Thursday, May 30, in Japan, that being gay is a disease that needs curing."

Homosexuality is not a disease and therefore not something to "cure."

Duterte reportedly said in a speech someone he knows who is gay told him that his arch political rival, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV, is also gay, based on how he moves.

"I said, 'Are you sure?'" Duterte told the audience. "They said, 'You ask any gay person who sees Trillanes move, they'll say he's gay.' No wonder. Good thing Trillanes and I are similar. But I cured myself."

Duterte also said that when he "began a relationship" with the woman who is now his ex-wife, "I said, this is it. I became a man again."

He added: "Duterte is gay. So I am gay, I don't care if I'm gay or not."

Newsweek reports that Duterte "has flip-flopped on LGBT rights." He ran on supporting same-sex marriage but once elected announced his nation is a Catholic country and attacked gay and transgender people.

“We are Catholics and there is the Civil Code, which says that you can only marry a woman for me... a woman to marry a man. That's our law so why would you accept that gender?"

"There is no gender because you can be a he or she...That's their culture. It does not apply to us,” he said.

The populist and extremist firebrand has bragged about personally murdering crime suspects, shooting a person who bullied him in school, and wanting to rape someone. President Donald Trump has said he has a "great relationship" with the Philippines dictator.