Duterte to meet with rescued Catholic priest; says Sept. 21 to be a 'day of protest'

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 18) — President Rodrigo Duterte confirms that he will meet with the Catholic priest rescued in Marawi over the weekend.

READ: Abducted priest rescued in Marawi, authorities say

Speaking with media Monday, the President said he would see Fr. Chito Soganub, a priest taken captive by the Maute in Marawi City in May.

Duterte did not mention when the meeting would take place and said he doesn't want to talk to Soganub about the war per se, but rather how female hostages were treated. The President wants to know if there was any truth into reports that women taken hostage in Marawi were raped.

RELATED: CHR sends team to probe offenses against women amid Marawi crisis

"That's a gross of violation of the rights of a human being. An affront to the dignity of the women ng Pilipinas. 'Yan ang isang.gusto ko [That's one of the things I want to know]. Paano, how was the treatment," said Duterte.

President Duterte denies talks that Fr. Soganub's rescue was the result of backdoor negotiations with the Maute group.

He said it would be impossible, clearly implying that he would not allow it.

But the president did say the priest was rescued through a special operation specifically targeting to free him. 

Sept. 21 a "day of protest"

Asked by a reporter if he would declare Sept. 21 – the anniversary of the declaration of martial law – a national holiday, the President said he would call it a day of protest instead.

"Lahat ng gustong mag-protesta laban sa gobyerno, laban sa pulis, sa military o lahat, magbabaan kayo diyan, mag-protesta kami," said the President.

[Translation: Everyone who wants to protest against the government, against the police, military, or everyone, come down and we will protest.]

He added, "Kami ring mga taga-gobyerno, ako mag-protesta rin kasi ang aming sahod maliit. Wala kaming equipments, wala kaming mga allowance. Sabay tayong mag-protesta sa gobyerno natin."

[Translation: We from the government, I will protest as well because our salaries are small. We have no equipment, no allowance.let's all protest the government.]

But Duterte warned protesters from committing crimes.

He said, "But do not for the life of me, I'm asking you: Do not commit crimes. No vandalism, no lahat kasi ang pulis pati ang Army sa barracks lang. Ang makikita ninyo diyan ang traffic lang."

[Translation: But do not for the life of me, I'm asking you: Do not commit ctimes. No vandalism, no nothing because the police and even the Army will be at their barracks. The only thing you will see is traffic.]

CNN Philippines digital producer Pia Garcia contributed to this report.