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39 countries urge PH to end drug killings

By: Inquirer September 30,2017 - 10:05 PM


The United States, Canada and Australia, three of the Philippines’ major trading partners and political allies, have joined 36 other nations in mounting international pressure on Manila to end the killings and the growing culture of impunity in President Duterte’s brutal anti-narcotics campaign.

In a move that could rile the President, the 39 countries signed a joint statement calling on the Duterte administration to uphold the “universal principles of democratic accountability and the rule of law” in resolving the thousands of killings in his war on drugs.

More than 3,800 people have been killed by the police in antidrug operations since last year. Thousands of others were killed by unknown assailants suspected to be working with the authorities.

Responding to the statement, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said the government would be happy to accept foreign assistance in ridding the country of the “scourges of drugs, corruption and criminality,” but it would never allow other nations to dictate how it should handle its internal affairs.

In Washington, where he recently met US State Secretary Rex W. Tillerson, Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said the joint statement was “biased and based on questionable information.”

“It is very unfortunate that instead of engaging us constructively, some western countries would rather criticize and impose conditions as if they can do a better job than the government in protecting the Filipino people,” Cayetano said.

The Philippine Mission to the UN also assailed the statement, describing it as “sweeping and politicized.”

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TAGS: 39, countries, end, killing, urge

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