Shortly after a meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte made an announcement asking police to be murderers and bounty hunters.
On Wednesday, Duterte announced “dead-or-alive” bounties worth $40,000 each for policemen he accused of helping an accused narco-politician, and said he preferred they be killed, reported Daily Mail.
The request for police officers to murder their colleagues is the latest tactic by Duterte in his version of the war on drugs.
Duterte made the offer during a speech at national police headquarters. He offered two million pesos ($40,000) for an unknown number of officers who allegedly helped a drug trafficking mayor killed in an anti-drug operation on July 30.
“Each of those policemen carry on their heads now, I am announcing, two million per head and you are free to go on leave (to pursue them),” Duterte told the officers in the audience.
“I’ll cut short my speech so that you will have a chance for a crack at the two million for those idiots.”
Duterte also added the bounty is “dead or alive – better dead.”
Daily Mail gave some background on the mayor:
He said the unidentified policemen had worked with Reynaldo Parojinog, the mayor of the southern city of Ozamiz, who was killed in the pre-dawn raid along with his wife, his brother and 13 other people.
Police said they were forced to kill the 16 people in self-defence, but Parojinog’s lawyer has insisted the mayor and others had not resisted arrest.
Duterte had accused Parojinog of being a major drug trafficker.
As he has done in similar cases of alleged extrajudicial killings, Duterte on Wednesday also vowed to give legal protection to the policemen who killed Parojinog and the other 15.
If they were found guilty of murder, he would pardon them, he vowed.
Duterte won presidential election last year after promising to murder tens of thousands of people in this war on drugs.
Police have confirmed killing more than 3,400 people in anti-drug operations, since he took office in the middle of last year, and more than 2,000 other people have been killed in drug-related crimes and thousands more murdered in unexplained circumstances, according to police data.
Rights groups say many of those victims have been killed by government-backed vigilantes, and Duterte has boasted that he would be “happy to slaughter” three million drug addicts.
Obama was an outspoken critic of Dutere’s mass murder of his own civilians, but the Trump administration has not made the same objections.
Tillerson met Duterte in Manila on Monday on the sidelines of a regional security forum. Duterte said American officials did not raise any concerns with him.
(Article By Jeremiah Jones)