MALACAÑANG denounced Friday the insistence of United Nations (UN) that President Rodrigo Duterte is backing the extrajudicial killings of drug suspects in the country.
In a statement, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella echoed Duterte's statement that the latter "does not tolerate extrajudicial killings."
Abella said it is "more alarming" that international organizations like UN have seemed to be "incomprehensible" about the President's fight against narcotics.
He added that it is "unfair" to put the blame solely on the President, especially to the law enforcement agencies that are just doing its mandate to end the drug menace.
"Government's principal concern is to ensure the general safety and security of the citizens. Crime rate has significantly decreased. A general cleaning-up of police ranks on assignments has been undertaken when the President assumed office," Abella said.
"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 added.
Abella made the statement after UN human rights experts called out the President anew to stop the rampant killings of drug personalities in the country.
Agnes Callamard, UN Special Rapporteur on summary executions, said Duterte must not give people, such as the police, the “license to kill.”
“Directives of this nature are irresponsible in the extreme and amount to incitement to violence and killing, a crime under international law. It is effectively a license to kill,” said Callamard.
Abella, however, reiterated that the the summary executions may have done “by vigilantes or by mistake.”
He said the National Police Commission had already been tasked to investigate the law enforcement agencies on the spate of the killings.
“The government approach is to see drugs as a public health and social issue, but also as national security issue,” Abella said. (Sunnex)