MANILA- The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Friday claimed that there are no cases of extra-judicial killings (EJK) under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, after it earlier cited a single case.
Philippine National Police spokesperson Chief Supt. Dionardo Carlos on Friday afternoon retracted his earlier statement that there is only 1 case of extrajudicial killing from July 1, 2016 up to Sept. 30, 2017 --- that of slain journalist Larry Que in Catanduanes.
Carlos, in a message to reporters, later said the case of Que is not yet a confirmed case of extrajudicial killing.
He earlier sought to allay fears of Filipinos who worry that they may become a victim of extrajudicial killings following the results of a Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey that showed 73 percent of Filipinos still worry that they or anyone they know will be a victim of extrajudicial killings.
Police under the term of President Duterte have been heavily criticized for doubts on the conduct of their anti-drug operations particularly "Oplan Tokhang," where cops knock at the doors of suspected drug users and peddlers and ask them to surrender.
The administration has several times defended the campaign, saying drug suspects killed in legitimate police operations had put up violent resistance.
According to government data (PDEA/PNP/NBI), a total of 3,811 drug personalities were killed in anti-drug operations from July 1, 2016 to August 29, 2017.
Government data also said there were 6,225 drug-related killings from July 2016 and September 2017.
This is contrary to estimates by human rights organizations, which put the death toll at 9,000 to 10,000, figures that the government has said are bloated.
The Duterte administration has repeatedly denied that summary killings amid its drug war are state-sponsored.