AUGUST 13, 2016 — The Philippine government does not condone unlawful killings and will investigate alleged violations of legal procedures and operational protocols.
This was the statement of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in response to a media statement issued by the US Embassy in Manila on August 12.
“The Philippine government is focused on its peace and order efforts, including the eradication of illicit drugs and its manufacture, distribution and use from our society,” the DFA statement said.
But it also said the government is “committed to the rule of law and the protection of the human rights of all” as it pursues this objective.
“Law enforcement officials are expected to abide by legal procedures and strict operational protocols. Alleged violations of these protocols will be investigated by the authorities and those who have broken the law will be prosecuted,” the DFA said.
“We do not condone any unlawful killings and Philippine authorities have been instructed to immediately look into these incidents and bring the perpetrators to justice,” it added.
The US Embassy had issued a statement on August 12 saying the US government is concerned by reports regarding extrajudicial killings of individuals suspected to have been involved in drug activity in the Philippines.
“We strongly urge the Philippines to ensure its law enforcement efforts are consistent with its human rights obligations,” the embassy said.
The DFA said it welcomed the US Embassy’s “reaffirmation of the longstanding ties between the Philippines and the United States, and the importance of the strategic alliance vis-à-vis our shared values and shared goals.”
“We look to the substantial and meaningful assistance of the United States in pursuit of our own national objectives, especially in addressing the issues of counterterrorism, maritime security and economic cooperation.