President Rodrigo Duterte’s office released a statement hailing the death of almost 200 drug traffickers who were never tried and convicted in the two months since his election. “The fight against crime is apparently becoming a looming state-sanctioned cover for a policy of summary executions and extrajudicial killings,” a congresswoman says.
Manila (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The Filipino government hailed its war on drugs a “success”, as nearly 200 people were killed without due process, hardline President Rodrigo Duterte’s office said in a statement.
“While the campaign against drugs is far from perfect, a generation of Filipinos have been saved from this scourge of society and destroyer of lives,” the press release explained.
The national police released figures showing that officers had killed at least 192 people they said were involved in drugs from 10 May to 10 July. Duterte took office on 30 June.
In addition, the bodies of almost a hundred unidentified people have been found, many with a sign around their neck blaming them for unproven crimes.
Although the Duterte administration expressed its opposition to vigilante justice, for many Filipinos this is just a fig leaf. For them, what is happening is a throwback to the time when death squads roamed the country under the Marcos regime.
Senator Leila de Lima, a long-time critic of Duterte, filed a resolution on Wednesday seeking a congressional investigation into the killings.
“The fight against crime is apparently becoming a looming state-sanctioned cover for a policy of summary executions and extrajudicial killings,” De Lima wrote in her resolution.