PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte said if the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency fails to eradicate illegal drugs by next year, he will allow the United Nations to intervene in its war on drugs.
“We will go to the United Nations, [and the] human rights [activists]… we will ask them to solve the problem for us… Drugs are a problem worldwide. Even the Americans are having a headache,” Duterte said in a speech at Camarines Sur Tuesday.
Barely a week after he designated the agency to lead the drug war, Duterte noted that PDEA is undermanned with only a little over 1,000 personnel—a big difference when compared with the Philippine National Police’s over 175,000 members.
Duterte said he could tolerate policemen involved in smuggling, but not linked to the illegal drug trade.
He also told the PNP not to interfere with PDEA on drug-related operations, after police came under fire for killing minors in the war on drugs.
Duterte on Wednesday again blasted the European Union, saying it allowed the Philippines to be shamed first before disowning the statements of a seven-member delegation which falsely protrayed itself as an EU mission.
“The EU never corrected [them],” Duterte said, noting that the correction came only after he blew up at them.
In a speech before jail wardens at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig, the President said the Philippines was being shamed because of their apparent lies about his bloody drug war.
“The disclaimer comes very late,” he said of an EU statement. “Too late to correct [the wrong],” he said.
In the same speech, Duterte reiterated his claims that he shot down supposed offers made by the United Kingdom for new financial assistance, a claim that the Department of Foreign Affairs had already denied.
Following the President’s latest tirade, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano clarified that the Philippines had only stopped accepting aid from the European Union, amid their criticisms of the President’s brutal anti-criminality campaign.
“We’re no longer accepting new grants from the EU,” Cayetano told reporters in a chance interview.
“This instruction not to accept funds for EU were precisely because we have issues on how we are functioning as a sovereign nation,” he said.
“While we know how to separate politics and trade, there are lots of resistance; these parliamentary groups misinforming and spreading fake news in the EU,” he added.
Cayetano said the President merely wanted the country to stand on its own; and accepting new grants from the 28-nation bloc should come without any conditions.
Duterte had earlier threatened to expel the EU ambassadors within 24 hours, amid criticisms against the administration’s campaign of war against drugs.
“I am prepared to lose all diplomatic relationships with all of European countries now. Do not ever, ever come to the Philippines; you’re not allowed to enter here now,” Duterte said.
The President’s statements were in apparent response to recent warnings by international rights group Human Rights Watch and the Philippine UPR Watch, calling from the expulsion of the Philippines from the UN Human Rights Council if unabated killings under the bloody drug war continues.
Duterte, however, mixed these criticisms with those from a seven-member delegation of European socialists to stop the bloody war on drugs or risk losing trade perks with the 28-member EU.
Despite Malacañang’s claims that the President was fed with the wrong information, Duterte said in a speech in Dumaguete City that he stood by his threats to expel the European envoys, saying that he was right to do it.
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