October 26, 2017
The United States "has been much cautious" about providing guns to the Philippine National Police (PNP) due to "concerns over human rights issues", US Ambassador to the Philippine Sung Kim said on Thursday.
In a forum of the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines, Kim said the US government recognized the drug problem in the Philippines but they have been cautious on providing "lethal weapons" to the PNP.
"What has been affected by our concerns over human rights issues is that we have been much cautious on providing lethal weapons to the PNP, elements that are directly involved in the anti-drug campaign," he said.
Kim said they continue to provide assistance for the Armed Forces of the Philippines such as training, equipment and sharing intelligence.
He also said US made clear human rights, rule of law, and due process is all very important.
"And we will continue to work with our partner, and allies, and friends to promote those values and principles," he said.
Some politicians and human rights groups criticized PNP after police officers allegedly killed drug suspects during their anti-illegal drugs operations.
President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the PNP and other agencies to cease their anti-drug operations and said the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency will handle the campaign instead. Ella Dionisio/DMS
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