This content is not available in your region

Amnesty: Philippines drug war killings could be 'crime against humanity'

Access to the comments Comments
By Euronews
Amnesty: Philippines drug war killings could be 'crime against humanity'

It’s a damning indictment of the war on drugs being waged in the Philippines,

Amnesty International says the widespread killings of alleged offenders by police and others are a “flagrant violation of international human rights law” and may constitute “crimes against humanity”.

The group’s report on the crackdown was presented in Manila on Wednesday.

Philippine Campaign Officer Wilnor Papa said there are financial incentives for police, with one senior officer revealing that for every person killed in a raid, the equivalent of up to 280 euros could be paid.

There are also claims of a racket between the police and some funeral homes, with payments for each body brought in.

Amnesty says the wave of drugs-related killings since President Rodrigo Duterte came to power last year appeared “systematic, planned and organised”.

Duterte said in November that he would continue with the war on drugs “until the last pusher drops dead”.

“The Duterte administration’s relentless pressure on the police to deliver results in anti-drug operations has helped encourage these abusive practices,” the report said.

Responding to the findings, presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella defended the Philippine National Police (PNP), saying that no extra-judicial killings were state-sponsored and investigations by Senate committees had proved that.

On Monday, in efforts to tackle corruption in the force, police said the war on drugs was being suspended.

Duterte made the decision after a security meeting triggered by the kidnap and killing of a South Korean businessmen by drugs squad police. He said the incident, which took place at the national police headquarters, had embarrassed the country and tarnished the image of the police.

with Reuters