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Rody against extrajudicial killings, Palace assures UN

President Duterte does not tolerate extrajudicial killings of drug suspects and has already ordered an investigation into these incidents, Malacañang assured the United Nations yesterday.

After two UN experts called the government attention to stop the unlawful killings, presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said it was “unfair” to insinuate that these deaths were sanctioned by the President.

“The President has repeatedly said that he does not tolerate extrajudicial killings, nor is it policy,” Abella said in a statement.

“The President therefore decries the attribution of killings to the Philippine government. This is simply unfair, especially to the hardworking men and women in uniform who risk their lives and limbs to win the war against drugs,” he said.

Abella said the President has already assigned the National Police Commission to conduct an investigation on reports that some suspects “may have been salvaged or killed by vigilantes or by mistake.”

“The nature of a number of deaths thoroughly imply internecine or organizational killings within the drug trade,” he said.

Recently, UN Special Rapporteur on summary executions Agnes Callamard called on the Philippine government “to adopt with immediate effect the necessary measures to protect all persons from targeted killings and extrajudicial executions.

Callamard also said Duterte’s promised immunity for such killings and bounties for drug dealers were “irresponsible” and amounted to a crime under international law. “It is effectively a license to kill,” she said.
(Genalyn D. Kabiling)