HRW slams gov’t denial of drug killings

Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Tuesday slammed the government’s denial of extrajudicial killings in its war on drugs.

“New Philippine police chief General Camilo Cascolan’s outright denial that extrajudicial killings took place in the government’s drug war is a blatant attempt to whitewash the sordid record of the PNP,” Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at HRW, said in a statement.

He said human rights groups and the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights have documented extrajudicial killings committed by state forces in President Rodrigo R. Duterte anti-drug campaign.

He also said that Mr. Cascolan should ensure that police cooperate with international bodies investigating the campaign.

“If the PNP has nothing to hide, it should welcome those who want to ferret out the truth in the drug war,” Mr. Robertson said.

Mr. Cascolan on Monday denied there had been extrajudicial killings in the country.

The government said more than 5,800 died in the war on drugs as of July, but human rights groups estimate the deaths at more than 27,000. — Vann Marlo M. Villegas

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