President Rodrigo Duterte met with the United States Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim and defended his regime’s war on drugs, on Wednesday.
Malacañan’s press release said that Kim said he understands the challenges faced by the Duterte administration in this ‘drug menace’ but stressed that there is a need in facilitating the investigation of drug-related deaths for the people to still believe and have confidence in the government.
Duterte defended that his campaign against drugs including its police operations has always been in line with the rule of law, saying that his administration never condoned abusive cops. He cited the arrest of the policemen involved in the killing of 17-year-old Kian Lloyd delos Santos.
The President reiterated that the Philippine Republic is ‘fragile’ and that he is committed to end the ‘vicious and toxic’ drug problem that could destroy it.
Apart from his deadly war, the topic on the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) budget came into light, and Duterte clarified that he never directed the Congress to cut the agency’s budget and that he cannot control their decisions.
He then reiterated his invitation to the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) to put up a satellite office in the country and conduct independent probes on alleged cases of human rights violations.
Kim then expressed Washington’s all-out support for the Philippines in its fight against terrorism as they discussed the threats in Mindanao, especially when the US Embassy through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) announced a P730 million assistance for Marawi City and other affected areas on September 5.
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, and Public Works Secretary Mark Villar were present during the meeting.