Rodrigo Duterte

Philippines: Death toll in Duterte's war on drugs

Police say 2,446 people killed in the anti-drug war during the first two months of the president's new administration.

Mohsin Ali, Ted Regencia | | Rodrigo Duterte, Philippines, Asia Pacific, Interactive

*As of August 31, police records show 929 drug suspects have been killed in government operations, while 1,507 have been killed by unknown attackers, and 10 police officers killed during drugs operations. That brings the total fatalities to at least 2,446. A man and his four-year-old daughter was also killed on Thursday, bringing the number up to 2,448.

*Al Jazeera has gathered the information of 887 fatalities.  

Halfway through President Rodrigo Duterte's first 100 days in office, his top police commander said that 1,900 drug-related killings have been recorded, drawing sharp criticism from human rights groups who denounced the Philippine leader for "steamrolling the rule of law".

Philippine police chief Ronald dela Rosa said during a Senate hearing that at least 750 of the incidents were linked to police operations. More than 1,100 other cases are still being investigated, he said.

That number has since gone up to 2,446 fatalities linked to the anti-illegal drugs war, as of August 31, according to dela Rosa, who testified before a Congressional budget committee hearing. 

That includes 929 people killed in government operations, 1,507 killed by unknown attackers and 10 police officers killed during anti-illegal drugs operations. Of the total number of unknown attacks, authorities have filed 627 cases.   

Duterte said that of the three million suspected drug dependents in the country, 600,000 have turned themselves in to authorities. 

INFOGRAPHIC: Who's liable for the mounting death toll?

While saying that it does not condone extrajudicial killings, the office of the president said the country should "seize the momentum" in its campaign against illegal drugs. 

Critics say that can only mean more deaths in the coming days and weeks.

Duterte took his oath as president on June 30 and has vowed to keep his campaign promise of solving the country's illegal drugs problem, saying, "I don't care about human rights, believe me."

As of August 31, an Al Jazeera English investigation has collected information from 887 people who were killed across the country.

Sources: Al Jazeera, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Sun Star Newspaper, Philippine Star, GMA News TV, Rappler, ABS-CBN News, Abante Tonite


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