Sunday, 7 August 2016
PHILIPPINE PRESIDENT RODRIGO DUTERTE: 'I DON'T CARE ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS'
About 800 people have been killed since Duterte won in May, according to reports
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has named several government officials, including judges, members of Congress and military officers accused of having links to the illegal drug trade, just hours after vowing to maintain his "shoot-to-kill" order against drug dealers.
In a televised national address early on Sunday morning, Duterte declared that the officials he accused would have their day in court, but quickly added while reading the list that "my mouth has no due process".
He justified his reading of the list, saying he has a sworn duty to inform the public about the state of "narco-politics" in the country.
Dozens killed in first four days of Duterte's drug war
According to the news website Rappler, Duterte named a total of 158 officials, many of whom are police and military officers, but also include three members of Congress and seven judges.
Duterte was speaking from his constituency of Davao, where he served as mayor before winning the presidency.
Earlier on Saturday, Duterte had vowed to keep his "shoot-to-kill" order "until the last day of my term, if I'm still alive by then".
"I don't care about human rights, believe me," he said, according to official transcripts released by the presidential palace.
About 800 people have been killed since Duterte won a landslide election in May, according to reports by the local press, which has been tracking reports of extra-judicial killings.
'I'm waging a war'
He said government officials who use their positions to engage in a trade that wrecks the lives of many Filipinos were first on his list.
Duterte said he was also offering soldiers and police his "official and personal guarantee" of immunity from prosecution for killings undertaken in the performance of their duties.
Death toll rises as Philippines intensifies war on drugs
In a homily to be delivered later on Sunday, Catholic leader Archbishop Socrates Villegas condemns the latest killings, saying, "I am in utter disbelief. If this is just a nightmare, wake me up and assure me it is not true. This is too much to swallow.
"From a generation of drug addicts, shall we become a generation of street murderers?" Villegas, president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), said in a statement posted on his website.
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