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Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte says to kill drug addicts
BY LAURA BULT
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, July 13, 2016, 9:40 AM
It’s a war on drug addicts.
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte, nicknamed “The Punisher,” has called for the executions of drug users as the latest measure in his unmerciful efforts to cut down crime.
“These sons of whores are destroying our children,” Duterte said earlier this month in a profanity-ridden speech in front of a crowd of 500 at a Manila slum, the Guardian reported.
“If you know of any addicts, go ahead and kill them yourself as getting their parents to do it would be too painful,” he said.
JUNE 30, 2016 FILE PHOTO
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte was sworn in as the Philippines' 16th president on a severe crime-fighting platform. (AARON FAVILA/AP)
Duterte, who has been called the “Trump” of the Philippines for his penchant for profanity, announced his severe crime-fighting measures a day after he was sworn in as president on June 30 with a promise that 100,000 would die in his war on drugs.
Before he was president, he was known for cleaning up crime in the Filipino city of Davao, known as the "murder capitol," where he was the mayor for more than two decades.
Within the first week of Duterte’s presidency, at least 72 suspected drug dealers were killed by police and vigilante groups in extrajudicial executions, according to a “Kill List” compiled by the Philippine Inquirer.
Police officers investigate the body of an alleged drug dealer, his face covered with packing tape and a placard reading "I'm a pusher", on a street in Manila on July 8. (NOEL CELIS/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
The latest casualty was the death of Ariel Pitong Unay, a former Army officer and “top drug personality” in the northern town of Catarma, who was killed during a police buy-bust operation, the Inquirer reported.
Another suspected dealer was killed in Manila last week and left in the street with packing tape over his face and a cardboard sign that read “I’m a pusher” covering his chest.
The murders came after Duterte, 71, issued shoot-to-kill orders to security services, offered bounties for the bodies of drug traffickers and promised he would dump enough corpses in Manila Bay to “fatten all the fish there,” the Guardian reported.
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Human rights groups have voiced their concern over the state-sanctioned spate of killings. (PNP-PIO HANDOUT/EPA)
At least, 952 confessed drug users and pushers have surrendered fearing for their lives, PhilStar reported.
The spate of state-sanctioned killings has caused outrage among humans rights groups, including human rights lawyer Jose Manuel Diokno, the national chairman of the Free Legal Assistance Group, who called the deaths a “nuclear explosion of violence.”
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“Do we really want to give the man with the gun the power to judge who are criminals and to kill them? To decide who is bad and who is good, who deserves to live and who deserves to die?” he wrote in a blog post for the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism.
Human Rights Watch echoed Diokno’s concerns, calling for an investigation into the surge of killings.
"Human Rights Watch is concerned that President Duterte's electoral platform, which included repeated promises to kill those deemed to be criminals and drug dealers, may be interpreted by some as a legitimization of the unlawful concept of extrajudicial killings as an acceptable approach to crime control," said Phelim Kine, the group's Asia deputy director.
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