UNICEF expresses concern over impact of drug war on children

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 23 2017 02:00 AM

UNICEF Philippines has expressed concern on the impact of the Duterte administration's war on drugs on Filipino children.

In a statement, UNICEF Philippines Representative Lotta Sylwander called the death of 17-year-old Kian Delos Santos during a drug raid in Caloocan City "deeply disturbing."

"UNICEF offers its condolences to Kian’s family. We share their grief and the grief of all the families of children who have been killed, as well as of children who have lost parents, caregivers and relatives, during anti-drug operations," the statement said.

UNICEF also called for a "fair and transparent" investigation into the death of Delos Santos, noting that the investigation be undertaken "in a manner that seeks to guarantee the best interests of children and promote respect for their rights."

"The best interests of children must be the guiding principle in every action by Government officials. Actions, no matter the motivation, that increase the risks children face or violate their rights are not in accordance with the responsibilities of signatories to the Convention on the Rights of the Child," Sylwander added.

The Grade 11 student was shot dead last Wednesday when he allegedly resisted arrest in Barangay 160, Caloocan. Witnesses said Delos Santos was mauled by policemen, given a gun, and told to run before he was shot.