Manila, Aug 28 (IANS) Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday ordered the police to kill all those who violently resist arrest, amid a rising number of deaths linked to his government’s deadly war on drugs.
“Your duty requires you to overcome the resistance of the person you are arresting… (if) he resists, and it is a violent one, you are free to kill the idiot. That is my order to you,” Duterte said during a speech at a ceremony marking National Heroes Day at the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani Cemetery in Manila.
At least 70 people died in four days earlier this month, adding to the thousands who have been killed since Duterte launched a campaign against the illegal drugs trade upon taking office last June.
Kian Loyd Delos Santos, 17, was among those killed during a police operation on August 16.
His death has triggered widespread public protests against the violent police crackdown.
The officers involved have been suspended and prosecutors are planning to charge them with murder.
The officers contend that Delos Santos was shot while resisting arrest and attempting to escape.
Duterte is scheduled to meet with the victim’s parents, who say their son never took or sold drugs, later on Monday.
The crackdown on illegal narcotics has led to the deaths of more than 7,000 people, of whom 3,451 were killed in police operations, while 96,703 people were arrested, according to official data.
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