Duterte to PNP: Spare civilians in drug war


President Rodrigo Duterte over the weekend said that he will not allow civilians to be killed in the continuation of the administration’s war against drugs.

He directed the police and military to desist from launching operations that may endanger civilians.

“I will not allow civilians to be killed in the process. [You, police and military], do not go into action where you will kill civilians,” Duterte said before boarding his flight to Myanmar on Sunday.

“Drop the shabu, and no one will die tomorrow,” the President added.

Duterte said that he is not threatened by the impeachment complaint filed against him last week by Rep. Gary Alejano as well as the possible filing of a case against him before the International Criminal Court in relation to the spate of killings amid the government’s campaign against drugs.

“I welcome both developments. It’s a democracy. [But] I will not be intimidated by the International Criminal Court, or the impeachment on fight against criminality,” Duterte said.

Alejano’s impeachment complaint alleged that Duterte should be held accountable for over 7,000 drug-related killings, hiring of ghost employees when he was the mayor of Davao City and not declaring at least P2 billion in assets.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) resumed its anti-drug operations early this month after the President once again allowed the agency to be involved in the campaign against the drug menace. Duterte in January stopped the PNP from mounting anti-drug operations because of the involvement of several police officers in the kidnapping and killing of a Korean businessman.

PNP chief Ronald dela Rosa had vowed that the “reloaded’ Oplan Tokhang will be less bloody. So far, at least 7,000 drug suspects have been killed by the police and unidentified persons or groups since the government launched Oplan Tokhang last year.


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