MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte's allies in the Senate urged his administration Wednesday to “exert and exhaust all efforts” to stop extrajudicial killings.
Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III led the Senate majority bloc in filing Senate Resolution No. 518, which condemned extrajudicial killings in the "strongest sense."
Sixteen members of the majority signed the resolution except Sen. Joel Villanueva, who was on sick leave but communicated his agreement.
“The Senate is against the violent death of every Filipino, and will seek justice for its victims," Pimentel said.
“Let it be known that the Senate, as the bastion of democracy, will not surrender its duty to protect and defend the human rights of every Filipino," he added.
Malacañang has repeatedly denied that killings are state-sponsored amid rising concerns of other countries and rights groups on extrajudicial killings allegedly perpetrated under the government's war on drugs.
The Senate resolution mentioned the cases of teens killed in recent police operations- Kian Loyd Delos Santos, Carl Arnaiz, and Reynaldo De Guzman- as cases of extrajudicial killings.
The resolution also cited a report from the Philippine Information Agency, which said that as of June 16 this year, a total of 12,833 homicide cases were recorded, 2,098 of which were drug-related, 2,535 were not drug-related, and 8,200 remain under investigation.
Through the resolution, the majority bloc called on the police and other law enforcement agencies to abide by the law in conducting operations.
“The Philippines is a civilized democratic society that will not tolerate unresolved killings. The police must do its job and solve these crimes,” Pimentel said.
The Senate minority earlier filed a similar resolution.