In the Philippines, ‘war on drugs’ means war

The country’s president-elect ramped up his already bloodthirsty rhetoric Saturday in a major speech, offering bounties on drug dealers, dead or alive, and demanding the resignations of corrupt cops — or else.

And those bounties? They pay more if the drug peddler is delivered dead than if he or she is still alive.

We begin with the Associated Press:

The Philippine president-elect has encouraged the public to help him in his war against crime, urging citizens with guns to shoot and kill drug dealers who resist arrest and fight back in their neighborhoods.

In a nationally televised speech late Saturday, Rodrigo Duterte told a huge crowd in the southern city of Davao that Filipinos who help him battle crime will be rewarded.

“Please feel free to call us, the police, or do it yourself if you have the gun — you have my support,” Duterte said, warning of an extensive illegal drug trade that involves even the country’s police.

More from Al Jazeera:

If a drug dealer resists arrest or refuses to be brought to a police station and threatens a citizen with a gun or a knife, “you can kill him”, Duterte said.

“Shoot him and I’ll give you a medal.”

He also said  that drug addicts could not be rehabilitated and warned, “if you are involved in drugs, I will kill you. You son of a whore, I will really kill you”.

Raw Story covers the bounties:

Duterte reiterated that his anti-crime campaign would be “a bloody war,” as he offered money for slain drug lords.

“I will pay, for a drug lord: five million (pesos)($107,000) if he is dead. If he is alive, only 4.999 million,” he laughed.

Duterte, who takes office on June 30 and is the longtime mayor of the southern city of Davao, also offered smaller amounts for lower-ranked figures involved in the drug trade.


Others have followed his lead with the elected mayor of the central city of Cebu, Tomas Osmena, admitting he paid more than $3,000 to police officers for killing drug traffickers.

Opening a war on corrupt cops

Politiko covers the unveiled threat:

President-elect Rodrigo Duterte has fired a warning shot against the denizens of corruption in the Philippine National Police (PNP) as he advised them to leave the service before he takes over on June 30, 2016.

“Corruption must stop. I would have to ask about three generals in (Camp) Crame to resign. Do not wait for me to name you in public because I will only humiliate you,” said Duterte during the victory party at Crocodile Park in Davao City on 4 June 2016.

Duterte did not identify the three police generals whom he previously hinted as deeply involved in illegal drugs.

Duterte’s police shakedown would continue up to the lower ranks as he moved for a review of all dismissed cases against erring cops who have used loopholes in the justice system to evade their arrest or dismissal.

From the Chicago Tribune, more on that threat:

Duterte] said he would order a review of dismissed criminal cases of active police officers, suggesting some may have bribed their way back onto the force.

“They go back again crucifying the Filipino,” he said. “I won’t agree to that.”

“If you’re still into drugs, I will kill you, don’t take this as a joke. I’m not trying to make you laugh, son of a bitch, I will really kill you,” he said to loud jeers and applause.

The foul-mouthed longtime Davao mayor and former government prosecutor said crimes were committed by law enforcers because of “extreme greed and extreme need.” He said that he would provide a small amount to an officer who was tempted because his wife has cancer or a mother died, but that those who would break the law because of extreme greed “will also be dealt with by me. I’ll have you killed.”

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