PH deserves salvation from drugs, crime, Duterte tells Filipinos on Easter

MANILA, Philippines – The story of Christ's resurrection should serve as a reminder for Filipinos that the Philippines deserves "salvation" from the ills of society, President Rodrigo Duterte said in his Easter Sunday message on April 16.

"The story of the Risen Christ on Easter Sunday is a message of perseverance and faith in the grief of Black Saturday," the President's message, released Sunday, read. "Christ's resurrection should inspire us to achieve our collective aspirations through our unwavering devotion."

He said that the occasion should remind citizens that "our country deserves salvation from drugs, criminality and corruption that have long plagued this nation and that our people will rise and triumph over society's ills."

"Let the promise of Easter be our guide as we build a progressive, inclusive and independent nation – where government and people work together to attain peace, justice, safety and security for all," he continued.

The President's Easter message comes at a time when his administration is facing criticism for a bloody war on drugs, linked to the deaths of more than 7,000 people. 

Duterte is currently in Qatar, the last leg of his 3-country trip to the Middle East. He will return to the Philippines on Monday, April 17. –