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Drug users aren’t human, says Philippines’ Duterte

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Manila (AFP) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, who is waging a bloody war on crime, has justified the large-scale killing of drug users by suggesting the victims were not human.

Duterte, who has seen about two thousand people killed since he was elected in May, made the remarks late Friday as he shrugged off the United Nations’ concerns over human rights in his country.

“Crime against humanity? In the first place, I’d like to be frank with you: are they humans? What is your definition of a human being?” he told soldiers while visiting an army camp, according to transcripts of his speech released afterwards.

“Human rights? Use it properly in the right context if you have the brains,” he added.

“You cannot wage a war without killing,” Duterte said, adding that many drug users were beyond rehabilitation.

His remarks came after various UN officials, including Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in June condemned his apparent support for extra-judicial killings. – READ MORE

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