In President Rodrigo Duterte's Philippines, the police, with his
explicit support, have killed thousands of alleged drug dealers and
users without due process, some while they were in jail, or asleep, or
at home with their families. They allegedly shot a 17-year-old while
he was in custody, then dumped his remains in an alley. The youngest
victim was 4.
Human rights groups, the U.S. Congress, the European Union and the
United Nations have all condemned Duterte's "war on drugs." Yet when
President Trump meets Duterte in Manila, it probably won't enter the
[continues 1205 words]
MANILA -- When investigators from the Philippine Commission on Human
Rights first arrived at Police Station No. 1, nothing seemed amiss.
They were working a tip about people being plucked from the slums by
police, held captive and ransomed for money at the station. But as
they surveyed the office of the local anti-drug unit, things looked
normal: desks, two sofas, a bookshelf.
Officers kept glancing at the bookshelf.
With news cameras rolling and police looking on, an investigator
knocked on it. Someone knocked back. When the false door was finally
opened, they found a dozen people packed in a small, concrete cell,
one bloodied, one with a swollen jaw.
[continues 1077 words]
MANILA - Every morning before dawn, Rosario Perez checks to make sure
her sons are still alive. The three brothers, all in their 20s, sleep
at the houses of friends and relatives, moving regularly, hoping that
whoever may have been assigned to kill them won't catch up with them.
They are not witnesses on a mob hit list, or gang members hiding from
rivals. They are simply young men living in the Philippines of
President Rodrigo Duterte.
"How could I not send them to hide?" said Ms. Perez, 47, after peeking
in on two of her sons and phoning the third. "We can barely sleep out
[continues 1213 words]
DAVAO CITY, Philippines - Gen. Ronald dela Rosa, chief of the
Philippine National Police, knows the value of a public display of
remorse. He has been forced to apologize more than once.
He was wrong, he acknowledged before the Philippine Senate as TV
cameras rolled, to have trusted undisciplined policemen who killed a
small-town mayor suspected of dealing drugs, as the mayor lay
defenseless on a jail-cell floor.
"I cannot blame the public if they're losing their trust and
confidence in their police," he told the Senate panel, accepting a
tissue from the mayor's son to wipe away his tears.
[continues 1245 words]
PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs would not be affected by the
abduction-slay of a South Korean businessman by the anti-drug police
operatives, his chief legal counsel said.
Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo said Duterte would not
allow any members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to further
Panelo said the Chief Executive would make sure that the police officials
involved in the killing of Hanjin executive Jee Ick-joo would face legal
"Regarding the murdered Korean businessman, the President will not
tolerate any police abuse. All these police scalawags will be dealt with
and prosecuted to the fullest under the law," Panelo said in a chance
[continues 230 words]
SAN FRANCISCO -- A US newspaper called on Washington to make sure that US
aid to the Philippines is not used for President Rodrigo Duterte's war on
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editorial ran weeks before the
kidnap-for-ransom-murder of a South Korean expatriate in the hands of
Philippine National Police officers -- in the guise of an anti-drug
operation--came to light and triggered an international outcry.
The Post-Gazette editorialized on Jan. 2 that "Even in a roomful of
tinhorn dictators, President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines would
[continues 215 words]
In this Sept. 15, 2016 file photo, President Rodrigo Duterte shows
documents containing the names of politicians, judges, and law enforcers
involved in illegal drugs during his visit to Camp Tecson in Bulacan.
CABANATUAN CITY - How can the Catholic clergy understand the seriousness
of the drug problem? They should try shabu.
A joking President Duterte floated the proposal here on Wednesday as
scored the Church anew for its supposed hypocrisy and pretensions.
The Roman Catholic Church, the faith of more than 80 percent of Filipinos,
has been vocal in expressing concerns over the spate of killings linked to
Duterte's brutal war on drugs. More than 6,000 suspected drug offenders
have been killed since Duterte assumed the presidency.
[continues 382 words]
[photo] In this Nov. 26, 2016 photo, President Rodrigo Duterte gestures as
he delivers his keynote address during the San Beda College of Law Alumni
Homecoming at the Shangri-La Hotel in Taguig City. (PPD/King Rodriguez)
MANILA, Philippines - President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday dug up old
controversies including the so-called Pajero scandal and clergy sexual
abuse in his latest tirade against the Catholic Church, which has been
raising concerns over the spate of killings linked to his war on drugs.
[continues 716 words]
President Rodrigo Duterte said no one could stop him from imposing martial
law. PPD/Ace Morandante
MANILA, Philippines -- President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday evening said
that if the drug problem in the country worsens, he would declare martial
Duterte said that no one could stop him from imposing martial law if the
country's situation becomes "virulent," citing that he does not care about
the Supreme Court.
"Kung gusto ko at if it will deteriorate into something really very
virulent, I will declare martial law if I wanted to. Walang makapigil sa
akin," Duterte said in a speech during the 49th annual installation of
officers and board of trustees of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and
[continues 339 words]
Also Threatens To Kill Governors, Bomb Kidnappers
PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday denied claims he wants to declare
martial law to extend his term in office.
But Duterte talked tough, threatening to kill provincial governors
involved in drugs after saying the same to mayors last week, and ordered
security forces to bomb kidnap gangs even if they held hostages.
Speaking before the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the
President stressed he had no ambition to prolong his stay in power.
[continues 527 words]
SPEAKER Pantaleon Alvarez yesterday said two incumbent members of the
House of Representatives are included in President Duterte's list of
politicians who are allegedly involved in the illegal drugs trade.
He said he received him a copy of the validated list last month.
"Iyung listahan na ibinigay sa akin, validated, ibig sabihin marami nang
ahensiya ang pinanggalingan pero on my part dino-double check ko pa rin,"
Alvarez told a press conference.
He refused to identify the two lawmakers or even say their gender, but
said he is convinced of the involvement of one of the two who is a fellow
[continues 163 words]
MANILA, Philippines - After confronting mayors with alleged ties to the
narcotics trade, President Rodrigo Duterte wants to meet with governors to
discuss the drug problem as he stressed that he would not back down on his
campaign even if it costs him his position.
"I'd be calling the governors next week. I'd really tell them. You tell
your barangay captains, you have supervisory powers cities under you,
those that are not yet charter cities, you tell the mayors," the president
told businessmen in Davao City Saturday night.
[continues 284 words]
The 81 barangays in Cebu Province that were initially declared by the
police as drug-free are still subject for validation, a top-ranking
official said Tuesday, January 3.
Chief Superintendent Noli Talino, Police Regional Office (PRO)-Central
Visayas director, said that it is up to the Cebu Provincial Anti-Drug
Abuse Office (CPADAO) to declare a barangay free from drugs.
"Yung sa amin, hindi pa naman final yung report ng Cebu Province. Ang sabi
ko sa kanila for recommendation as a drug-free barangay pero hindi pa
final yun. Ipapa-validate pa natin 'yun (For our part, the report from the
Cebu Province is not yet final. What I told them was only to submit a
recommendation of drug-free barangays but these are not yet final. This
(recommendation) will still be validated," said Talino. "So if I will not
approve it then it's back to zero."
[continues 158 words]
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, a tough-talking populist who
took office in June, has earned international condemnation for
ordering or encouraging thousands of extrajudicial killings intended
to rid the country of illegal drugs and bragging about personally
having killed people.
But at home, he remains extremely popular, with approval ratings
topping 60%, and firmly in command, with his supporters controlling
Congress, the courts and the police and military.
His detractors have found some hope in an unlikely figure: the vice
[continues 1430 words]
MANILA, Philippines -- An average of 30 people have been killed daily in
the past 167 days under the Duterte administration's intensified campaign
against criminality, especially the illegal drug trade.
Records from the Philippine National Police (PNP) showed 2,102 drug
pushers and users killed after allegedly fighting it out with police, and
2,886 others getting killed under sketchy circumstances and whose cases
are listed as "death under investigation" or DUI.
The reported deaths totaled 4,988 in less than six months.
[continues 414 words]
In war, there is collateral damage. In the case of the vicious war on
illegal drugs, President Duterte acknowledged last week that there have
been "unintended killings" that have claimed the lives of innocents
including children. In fact practically everyone killed in the drug war
was legally innocent since guilt beyond reasonable doubt was never
established in court, and most of the slain weren't even indicted.
For the unintended killings, the President said he's sorry, although he
made it clear that it would not stop his relentless war. Such a cavalier
attitude toward human life is likely to rub off on the forces fighting the
drug menace, making them careless about hitting innocents in the
crossfire. It can encourage them to continue disregarding laws and rules
on armed confrontations and the conduct of arrests and searches.
[continues 223 words]
MANILA, Philippines - Maaaring magkaroon din sa Pilipinas ng mga asylum
para sa mga adik na tuluyan ng nasira ang ulo dahil sa paggamit ng ilegal
na droga partikular ng shabu.
Ito ang sinabi ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte kaugnay ng mga adik na hindi
na kayang i-rehabilitate dahil lumiit na ang utak sa matagal na paggamit
"If the brain is shrunk and it was your forensics who told us that that is
the case. They have conducted the --- and almost all of them have shrunk
brains," ani Duterte.
[continues 114 words]
No matter how the questions were rephrased, the President stuck to his
guns in his replies on his much criticized campaign against illegal drugs.
For a man who made a campaign vow to bring genuine change in the country,
it may come strange. For his new year's resolution, President Rodrigo
Duterte promises no change in his administration's offensive campaign
against illegal drugs.
President Duterte though already publicly declared "sorry for the
unintended" killing of innocent by-standers in his administration's deadly
war against illegal drugs. But President Duterte vows to continue the
anti-drug campaign despite the alleged extra-judicial killing
controversies that hounded him in his first six months into office.
[continues 1002 words]
WITH five more barangays in the city still drug-affected, Mayor Belen
Fernandez said the drug clearing operations by the police and barangay
officials will continue even during the holidays, until Dagupan City is
100 percent drug free.
So far, 26 of the 31 barangays have already been declared drug-free.
The five barangays yet to be cleared are Lasip Chico, Pantal, Barangay
2&3, Calmay and Pugaro.
At the same time, she said the SURE program launched by the city
government for drug users who surrendered is also continuing.
[continues 103 words]
MANILA, Philippines -- Three American senators asked the US Department of
State to explain the use of funding aid in the Philippines to make sure
the money is not being used for the government's war on drugs.
US Senators Edward Markey (D-Massachusetts), Marco Rubio (R-Florida) and
Christopher Coons (D-Delaware) have expressed grave concern over alleged
extrajudicial killings and human rights violations in the country under
the President Rodrigo Duterte's anti-narcotics campaign.
"The Philippine anti-drug movement known as Project [Tokhang] in fact
appears to be a campaign of mass atrocities thinly disguised as a response
to a public health emergency," the senators said in a letter addressed to
US Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Assistant
Secretary William Brownfield.
[continues 501 words]
Authorities in the Philippines say a series of drugs raids have netted
nearly a tonne of methamphetamine, with a street value of UKP#120m
Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre said the haul was the biggest in the
Mr Aguirre said 10 people had been charged.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has pursued a bloody war on drugs
since taking office six months ago, encouraging police to shoot on site.
More than 6,000 drug users and dealers are suspected to have been killed
by both police and vigilantes since the crackdown began.
[continues 193 words]
Hooded killers have turned the bloody anti-illegal drug war of the Duterte
government into an art form.
That's no exaggeration. One stark evidence is the front-page photograph by
Raffy Lerma -- a sidestreet Filipino Pieta -- that shows a grieving wife,
rain-soaked and in rags, cradling her bloodied freshly murdered husband.
This picture also threatens to be the emblem of the Duterte regime's
deathly drive against illegal drugs.
Last weekend, this grim theme dimmed a bit with the start of the dawn
masses, the Simbang Gabi, that also ushered in the official period of
holiday caroling, a season of good tidings.
[continues 319 words]
SECRETARY of Justice Vitaliano N. Aguirre II surmises that the government
is winning its controversial war on drugs as he, together with officials
of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), presented yesterday
evidence of what he called the "biggest drug bust" so far in the country.
"Malamang sa malamang, nananalo na tayo. (It's more than likely, we are
winning)," the secretary told reporters when asked for his assessment on
whether the government is winning in its drug campaign that has been
strongly criticized for the alleged rise in extra-judicial killings that
it has spawned.
[continues 484 words]
Dagupan City's War On Drugs
THERE are still 26 barangays deemed drug-clear, and five more to be worked
on, the list has been changed and corrected by City Mayor Belen T.
Fernandez, as chair of the City Anti-Drug Abuse Coordinating Council
Mayor Belen Fernandez, as chair of the City Anti-Drug Abuse Coordinating
Council (CADACC) signed the certification affirming earlier declarations
by the Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Councils that their respective villages
are now cleared of illegal drugs.
[continues 375 words]
At 4:50 a.m., the stragglers dashed through Manila's darkened streets,
hoping for a spot in the pews.
But they were too late. Hundreds of worshipers had already packed the
Sto. Nino de Paz Community Greenbelt Chapel, a low, white dome in a
sprawling outdoor shopping complex, for Friday's Simbang Gabi
So at least 100 more crowded on the pavement outside, singing "Glory
to God" beneath a crisp crescent moon.
Christmas in the Philippines is a long, spirited and, to many,
exhausting affair. About 90% of Filipinos are Christian, and they take
the holiday seriously. Stores start playing Christmas music as early
as September and don't stop until early January. Christmas trees
spring up in malls and public parks. Carolers go door to door singing
"Jingle Bells," "Silent Night" and "Ang Pasko Ay Sumapit", a lively
Tagalog tune celebrating Jesus' birth. The holiday delicacy is lechon
- -- whole suckling pig, a Filipino delicacy.
[continues 868 words]
MANILA - Rayzabell Bongol, an 18-year-old mother and methamphetamine
user, was afraid to die in President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs
in the Philippines. So she turned herself in to the police. They made
her sign a pledge that she would never take illegal drugs again, then
sent her home.
Once a week now, she is expected to attend a police-sponsored Zumba
dance workout, where she gets a health check and a meal. Mr. Duterte
"promised change," she said at a recent class as three dozen other
recovering addicts bopped and swayed to a blaring Latin beat. "As you
can see, I am changing."
[continues 1290 words]
HOWEVER you put it, the Philippine National Police is among the
government agencies responsible for the proliferation of illegal
drugs in the country-either by direct involvement or sheer ineffectiveness.
Strange enough, the law enforcers who gained notoriety for protecting
drug cartels and syndicates in the past are now earning praises for
killing drug suspects at will-in the name of a "drug war." Do you
really want to vindicate and encourage the police to further abuse
its power while the unjust social system prevails?
[continues 218 words]
IT'S EASY: Start with semantics.
Step 1: Establish a consensual value system to shape a receptive
audience. A consensual value system is composed of a repertoire of
values everyone is willing to accept. It aims to be universal as well
as encompassing by differentiating a set of favorable values from
those unpalatable to the audience. We desire a drugfree Philippines.
Values legitimize a political action (be it human rights intervention
or extrajudicial killing) by leading their audience to perceive
coherence in their binary arrangement.
[continues 774 words]
IT'S A mantra that top government officials keep chanting: Police
killings enjoy a presumption of regularity.
This mantra is used in answer to voices of protest when someone is
killed by police under suspicious circumstances, such as when an
arrested suspect is killed inside a police car for allegedly
attempting to grab an officer's gun. This mantra is increasingly
being heard as response to criticism against the mounting number of
people killed by police in the administration's war on drugs. A total
of 929 people have been killed during police operations from July 1 to Aug. 31.
[continues 832 words]
Just like in the movies, but this is real life.
President Duterte admitted he takes inspiration from Western action
movies like "Dirty Harry" in waging his bloody war on drugs that has
raised concern among the United Nations, the United States and human
Duterte's revelation came just hours before a blast ripped the Roxas
night market in his hometown Davao City that killed 14 and injured
more than 60 people.
Answering queries from Michael Sullivan of the National Public Radio
Washington, Duterte related the movie "Dirty Harry" with the killings
of sus-pected drug pushers, particularly those killed by vigilante groups.
[continues 500 words]
LINGAYEN-DAGUPAN Archbishop Socrates Villegas has urged Filipinos to
speak up against the spate of killings targeting suspected criminals
rather than remain comfortably silent.
In a pastoral message, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the
Philippines (CBCP) head reminded the faithful that "What you do or
not do for the least of your brethren, you do to Christ."
The message was to be read today in all churches under the
Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan in lieu of the Sunday homily.
"If you agree with us that killing suspected criminals is a crime and
a sin itself, why do you just stay seated there in comfort keeping
quiet? Whatever you do or not do for the least of your brethren, you
do to Christ," Villegas said.
[continues 397 words]
Aside from nightclubs and bars, authorities are setting their sights
on condominium dwellers and call center agents in Metro Manila in the
next phase of the war on drugs.
National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) director Chief Supt.
Oscar Albayalde said they are investigating reports that drug pushers
are using condominium dwellers and call center agents in their
Albayalde noted that the two groups could evade police detection
because many call center agents work at night while condominiums are
usually well secured against unwanted visitors. "I've ordered the
five district directors to step up the implementation of Oplan
Tokhang and Project Double Barrel in condominium units, business
process outsourcing ( BPO) offices in Metro Manila," Albayalde said.
[continues 279 words]
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte could face international
criminal charges as the death count in his relentless war on drugs
tops almost 2000, human rights advocates say.
Comments by the tough-talking former provincial mayor such as "all of
you are into drugs, you sons of bitches ... I will kill you" could be
used as evidence to prosecute him, they say.
Sam Zarifi, from the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), says
it is likely that as the killings continue lawyers will gather
evidence to initiate legal proceedings against Mr Duterte, as 9541
victims of the late Philippines dictator Ferdinand Marcos did in the
United States in the 1990s.
[continues 299 words]
As the casualties in the government's war on drugs continue to pile
up, the Philippines faces a "human rights calamity," according to
Human Rights Watch.
Phelim Kine, Human Rights Watch (HRW) Asia deputy director, said at
an ABS-CBN News Channel forum on human rights Tuesday night that the
number of suspects killed in the hands of police in the first eight
weeks of the Duterte administration is 10 times higher than those who
died in the first six months of the year.
[continues 752 words]
President: US Leader Must First See Context
PRESIDENT Duterte yesterday said he was ready to defend his
take-no-prisoners war on drugs in a discussion of the human rights
situation in the Philippines with US President Barack Obama in Laos next week.
Mr. Duterte said he was willing to meet with Obama on the sidelines
of the East Asia Summit of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations
(Asean) meeting in Vientiane on Sept. 6, but he would demand that he
be allowed to first explain the context of his merciless crackdown on
the illegal drug trade before engaging the US leader in a discussion
of the human rights situation in the Philippines.
[continues 546 words]
The United Nations is only paying lip service to the fight against
illegal drugs and is even prejudging the involvement of law enforcers
in summary executions of suspected drug offenders, Foreign Affairs
Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. said on Monday.
"The UN is just making mere lip service, stymied by the most vocal
who seem to protect the illegal drugs trade," Yasay said.
"This is the kind of frustration we must express. We must also
understand the UN is not the solution but we must all be active
participants," he told journalists at the Japan-ASEAN Media Forum at
the Edsa Shangri-La Hotel in Mandaluyong City.
[continues 203 words]
DID "The Punisher" just own up to the killing of druggies?
President Duterte has admitted the government's lack of funds for the
rehabilitation of drug dependents had led to the deaths of suspected
Since he assumed the presidency on June 30, almost 2,000 alleged drug
pushers and users had died in police operations and vigilante killings.
Speaking before members of the Volunteers Against Crime and
Corruption (VACC) in Malacanang Monday night, the President said his
administration did not have the money to finance recovery programs
for some 700,000 drug users who had turned themselves in to police.
[continues 85 words]
CEBU CITY - The Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) has intensified its
campaign against illegal drugs with the launching of Oplan Pokemon,
the police version of the popular mobile phone game.
Just like the popular mobile phone app game, where players go to
places to catch Pokemon monsters, Oplan Pokemon calls for the local
police to go to different areas to look for those involved in the
illegal drugs trade.
The CCPO marked its first operation under Oplan Pokemon with a convoy
of patrol cars and funeral hearse.
[continues 156 words]
ILOILO CITY - Church and religious groups have decried the surge in
killings of suspected drug pushers and have called on the faithful to
"defend the dignity of life."
Fr. Marco Sulayao, chair of Promotion of Church People's Response
(PCPR) on Panay Island, said while religious people support the
eradication of illegal drugs and rehabilitation of drug dependents,
these should be done without the "wanton" killings of suspected drug pushers.
He said there has been no significant outcry because of the people's
desire to get rid of illegal drugs, which have victimized many,
especially the youth.
[continues 353 words]
Under fire for allegedly condoning extralegal killings, Malacanang
yesterday told the international media to visit the Philippines so
they can see for themselves the extent of the drug menace in the country.
Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said visiting
the country would enable foreign journalists to understand the
context of President Duterte's tough pronouncements on narcotics and crime.
"The international media, as I have repeated time and again, should
come to the Philippines and experience the life of the barangay
(village) people who have so much drug problems," Andanar told
reporters on the sidelines of the Japan-ASEAN Media Forum at the EDSA
Shangri-La Hotel in Mandaluyong City.
[continues 571 words]
(AP) - PRESIDENT Duterte said on Monday that the bloody antidrug
campaign, that has left nearly 1,800 people dead, did not amount to
genocide, but he nevertheless assured the policemen he was ready to
go to jail to defend them from lawsuits.
Mr. Duterte drew a line between the widespread killings sparked by
his antidrug war and the brutality under Syrian President Bashar
Assad and the atrocities committed by the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group.
"Genocide? Who did I kill? I did not kill any child. I did not drop
barrel (bombs) just like Assad," the President said in a speech to
mark National Heroes' Day before war veterans, ambassadors and top
officials. "I'm fighting ... criminals."
[continues 230 words]
THERE seems to be no doubt on the unwavering commitment of the
administration of President Rodrigo Duterte to fulfill his campaign
promise of going all-out against the drug menace, come hell or high water.
The campaign rhetoric had hinted how bloody the war against illegal
drugs and criminality might be-like when then presidential candidate
Duterte impressed upon the electorate that 100,000 criminals could
die and their bodies dumped into Manila Bay to fatten the fish
there-but the actual number of fatalities can still be very alarming,
particularly to human rights advocates.
[continues 706 words]
When the late Rafael Salas became the first head of the United
Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) in 1969, among his
young recruits was Cecile Joaquin.
Cecile was still working in New York in what was renamed the UN
Population Fund when she met a Filipino lawyer some years later. The
lawyer, Perfecto Yasay Jr., traveled the world after being named vice
president of the international YMCA when he was just in his early
20s. Romance bloomed between the two, which led to marriage.
[continues 935 words]
Nobody, not even the poor, can justify getting into illegal drugs,
President Duterte stressed, and there must be an "eye for an eye, a
tooth for a tooth" principle of retributive justice to finally end the menace.
As this developed, Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines
president and Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas issued a
prayer for the healing of the nation amid the rising number of
killings related to the war on drugs.
"They know that is prohibited, whether you are poor or rich," Duterte
said Monday night as he reiterated his heart would never bleed for
families of those killed in government operations, even if some of
them were supposedly forced to become drug pushers to earn a living.
[continues 842 words]
The Europen Union ( EU) has expressed concern over the spate of
killings in the Duterte administration's campaign against illegal
drugs, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza said yesterday.
In a press conference at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport,
Dureza said when he met with EU officials in Brussels, Belgium last
Aug. 25, "they asked about the issue on drug campaign in the country."
"They told me that many people are being killed... So many of our
agreements with the EU have something to do with human rights issues,
like the free tariff privilege with the EU. It is important that we
clarified it to them," Dureza said.
[continues 297 words]
Pedicab driver Reyjin dives into a neighbor's house for a quick meth
fix, fearful of taking a bullet to the head in President Duterte's
brutal war on drugs but unable to quit.
More than 2,000 people have died violent deaths since Duterte took
office two months ago and immediately implemented his scorched-earth
plans to eradicate drugs in society, ordering police to shoot dead
traffickers and urging ordinary citizens to kill addicts.
The bloodbath has seen unknown assailants kill more than half the
victims, according to police statistics, raising fears that security
forces and hired assassins are roaming through communities and
shooting dead anyone suspected of being involved in drugs.
[continues 210 words]
Judging from foreign media reports, the Duterte administration is
attracting a lot of international attention, much of it for the wrong reasons.
President Duterte will probably tell the foreign media to go to hell,
but it's the Philippines that's taking a hit from all the bad press.
So far, most foreign governments have refrained from publicly
commenting on the drug-related mass killings, now about to shoot past
2,000. But I've been told that diplomats representing key global
players are now touching base with certain administration officials,
mainly to send word that the negative reports have started taking
their toll on tourism and investments from their countries.
[continues 997 words]
WE, THE members of the Association of Major Religious Superiors in
the Philippines, acknowledge our active role as a visible force and
prophetic voice in social life, in working for the common good. A
role embraced by the Lord Jesus himself when he quoted the prophet
Isaiah as he began his ministry: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor. He has
sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the
blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year
acceptable to the Lord." (Luke 4:18 19)
[continues 592 words]
CANBERRA - Since President Duterte launched his war on drug
syndicates on July 1, he has plunged the Philippines into a
multitheater conflict against a broad front of international
institutions, including the United Nations, its human rights
rapporteurs, human rights watchdog groups, Amnesty International, the
country's Chief Justice and other domestic critics of his
Hundreds of suspected drug dealers have been killed in alleged
extrajudicial executions as the administration pursued the
President's campaign promise to exterminate the drug menace in three
to six months of his presidency.
[continues 603 words]
(AP) - On the day he was sworn into office, President Rodrigo Duterte
went to a Manila slum and exhorted residents who knew any drug
addicts to "go ahead and kill them yourself as getting their parents
to do it would be too painful."
Two months later, nearly 2,000 suspected drug pushers and users lay
dead as morgues continue to fill up. Faced with criticism of his
actions by rights activists, international bodies and outspoken
Filipinos, including the top judge, Duterte has stuck to his guns and
threatened to declare martial law if the Supreme Court meddles in his work.
[continues 447 words]