Sunday, 17 February, 2019

Rights groups says Philippine police has falsifies evidence

Rights groups says Philippine police has falsifies evidence Rights groups says Philippine police has falsifies evidence
Melinda Barton | 03 March, 2017, 01:43

MALACAÑANG on Thursday slammed a "thoughtless and irresponsible" report by Human Rights Watch saying the first six months of President Rodrigo Duterte in office had been a "human rights calamity" for the Philippines.

"The unlawful killings being carried out by police forces ultimately under Duterte's command have repeatedly been brought to his attention by the media, the United Nations, foreign governments, and domestic and global non-governmental organizations", HRW said.

"Under the veneer of anti-drug operations, the Philippine police at Duterte's urging have killed thousands of Filipinos". Witnesses interviewed by the HRW include relatives neighbors of the victims, as well as eyewitnesses to the alleged incidents of police killings.

"They plant guns, spent ammunition, and drug packets on their victims' bodies to implicate them in drug activities. No one has been meaningfully investigated, let alone prosecuted for these killings", added the report.

Humans Rights Watch - who have published a new report on the situation in the Philippines - claims that masked gunmen taking part in killings "appeared to be working closely with the police".

Titled License to Kill: Philippine Police Killings in Duterte's War on Drugs, the report said that the country's president along with other officials were responsible for encouraging extrajudicial executions in impoverished areas of Manila and other urban areas in the name of the anti-drug campaign.

Since his inauguration as president in June a year ago, Duterte and other senior officials have been outspoken in support of a nationwide campaign to kill drug dealers and users, while denying or downplaying the illegality of police actions, the group said. "Don't sue the police and the soldiers because they're doing what I ordered them to do".

For his part, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto C. Abella said the assertion of planted evidence done by PNP personnel is an "allegation, and nothing more".

"In short, all these accusations of circumventing police procedures should be proven in a competent court and if found meritorious should result in appropriate sanctions against the perpetrators. Failing these, such claims are mere hearsay", Mr. Abella said.

Duterte has consistently defended his hard stance against illegal drugs and has often talked about shoot-to-kill orders in his various speeches.

He said the government is waging a war on criminality and "not a war on humanity".

"How will you silence them?"

"IT'S either you kill me or I will kill you".

This is the second HRW report involving Duterte.

"There were 24 cases and we'll look at those 24 cases".

"If there is evidence that would point to the violations of these police officers, file cases against them", he told reporters.

INCB "extrajudicial action, purportedly taken in pursuit of drug control objectives, is fundamentally contrary to the provisions and objectives" of worldwide drug conventions.

Amid criticisms on his deadly war on drugs, Duterte warned that individuals who will continue to be involved in narcotics trade have to face death. A final reading is to be held next week but it is viewed as a formality.