Martial law in Mindanao would not be different from martial law during the time of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos, President Duterte said before leaving Moscow for Manila.
Mr. Duterte had put the entire island of Mindanao under martial law following the recent terror attacks in Marawi.
“Martial law is martial law. So kayong mga kababayan ko, you’ve experienced martial law, it would not be any different from what the President Marcos did. I’d be harsh,” Mr. Duterte said in a Facebook live interview with Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson of the Presidential Communications Operations Office.
The interview took place in Mr. Duterte’s plane before he took off from Moscow.
Mr. Duterte recalled that during the campaign, he had been asked how he would deal with terrorism, and he said he had said that he would be harsh.
He also said he had warned everybody not to force his hand into it.
“I have to do it to preserve the Republic of the Philippines and the Filipino people,” he said.
Mr. Duterte also called on Filipinos not to be too scared, saying he had cut short his Russia visit to go home.
“I will deal with the problem once I have arrived,” he said.