6,225 killed, 517 gov't officials arrested in PH drug war since July 2016: PDEA

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 01 2022 08:53 PM

Policemen check the gun recovered from one of two drug suspects after they were shot dead by police during a buy-bust operation in Tondo, Manila on June 8, 2018. Basilio H. Sepe, ABS-CBN News/File
Policemen check the gun recovered from one of two drug suspects after they were shot dead by police during a buy-bust operation in Tondo, Manila on June 8, 2018. Basilio H. Sepe, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA — More than 6,000 people have been killed in the Duterte administration's war on drugs since July 2016, based on data released by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency on Tuesday.

According to PDEA, at least 224,215 anti-illegal drugs operations were conducted by government from July 1, 2016 to Dec 31, 2021.

These resulted in 323,579 arrests and 6,225 deaths, the agency said. Over 4,000 minors were rescued, it added.

PDEA director Derrick Carreon said most of the children were used as couriers of drug pushers.

“The second highest number is those in possession of dangerous drugs and then ang susunod po doon ay mga drug pushers na bata. 'Yung iba po ay natatagpuan bilang employees or visitors of a drug den," he said.

PDEA said authorities have seized at least P75 billion worth of narcotics were since the drug war onset, including 160,111 kilos of ecstasy, 9,850 kilos of shabu, 9,429 kilos of marijuana, and 524 kilos of cocaine.

According to the agency, of the total arrested, 395 were elected government officials and 196 were uniformed personnel.

Over 24,000 barangays have been cleared of illegal drugs, it claimed.

“We will sustain the effort and the momentum kaya nga po katulad nyan sa barangay drug clearing efforts po natin dati napakababa po ng drug cleared barangays. Ngayon po, of the 42,045 barangays nationwide, 24,253 na po ang drug cleared at ang nalalabi na lang po na kailangan i-clear ay 11,175," Carreon said.

The Philippines has come under pressure to hold a thorough probe and the International Criminal Court last year announced it would investigate the country's violent narcotics crackdown, although the tribunal suspended it after.

President Rodrigo Duterte has for 5 years defended authorities and argued that all those killed were drug dealers who fought back. He has publicly said police could kill if they believed they were in danger and he would pardon any who end up in prison.

Even though authorities said only over 6,000 have been killed in the administration's war on drugs, activists say many thousands more drug users and peddlers were shot dead by mysterious gunmen. Police have denied involvement in those. 

— Report from Wheng Hidalgo, ABS-CBN News

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