Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte during the campaign on May, 2016, days before the election. He promised that people will die and they did.

Drug War in the Philippines

When Duterte took office in 2016, his orders were clear: kill all the drugs lords, pushers, and addicts. Watchlists were drawn in communities and the police went house to house, conducting “Tokhang”, a knock and plead scheme to urge citizens to surrender and stop using drugs. Day and night, people were killed inside their homes and in the streets, either by the police in anti-drug operations or alleged death squads on motorcycles. Some just turn up dead, their bodies covered in tape with a sign: “Drug Pusher, Do Not Emulate”. Philippine National Police claim there are only about 6000 deaths after the war on drugs was launched but human rights groups estimate that the death toll to reach up to 30,000.