- There has a been a dramatic increase in the number of drug suspects killed in police operations since Duterte’s win in the presidential election
- The PNP explained that intensifying the efforts against drug dealers is Duterte's main priority
- PNP's internal affairs office will investigate if police officers complied with the law during their operations
In just five short days, 25 drug dealers have already been killed by the Philippine National Police (PNP). The increase in police arrests and kills in recent weeks was described earlier by PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Wilben Mayor as motivated by the crime-busting President-elect Rodrigo Duterte.
Duterte has said repeatedly that he supports the killing of drug dealers by both police officers and private individuals of the country.
In comparison, a total of 39 drug suspects were killed by the police from January 1 to May 9, 2015, or an average of 0.3 drug suspects killed per day. After the May 9 elections, 29 drug suspects have been killed in police operations from May 10 to June 15 or an average of 0.8 drug suspects killed per day.
From June 16 to June 20, 25 drug dealers have already been killed in police operations or an average of 5 drug suspects killed per day. The Calabarzon region had the highest number of killed drug dealers at 20, followed by Central Luzon and Central Visayas with two drug suspects killed in each region, and northern Mindanao with one criminal slain.
Mayor said that the war against illegal drug trade have greatly intensified after Duterte won the election because it is his biggest priority as the president.
The PNP spokesman also responded to suspicions from various sectors that the police are now intentionally killing drug suspects without trying to arrest them peacefully.
“The reason why the suspects were killed is they engaged in a shootout [with] the law enforcers. If we base it on their reports, they followed operational procedures because there is imminent danger on their part,” Mayor explained in an earlier interview.
Mayor added that the internal affairs service and territorial units will conduct thorough investigations on the recent killings of the drug suspects to make sure that the protocol was properly observed by the police officers involved.