Philippine official congratulates Ressa on Nobel

The presidential office in the Philippines has offered praise for local journalist Maria Ressa after she was named a recipient of this year's Nobel Peace Prize. She has been a critic of President Rodrigo Duterte's heavy-handed approach to crime and other matters.

A presidential spokesperson said "it is a victory for a Filipina and we are very happy for that," in a regular news conference on Monday, three days after the announcement of the award.

Ressa is co-founder of the digital media company Rappler, which is a forum for investigative journalism. Rappler has focused attention on Duterte's bloody anti-drug campaign in the Philippines.

In an hour-long speech broadcast on TV on the same day, the president himself failed to mention Ressa, an omission that drew criticism from some media outlets.

In the past, Duterte has called Ressa's reports "fake news."

The Norwegian Nobel Committee named her and Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov the recipients of the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts to safeguard freedom of expression.