Philippine president-elect Rodrigo Duterte yesterday vowed to introduce executions by hanging as part of a ruthless law-and-order crackdown that would also include ordering military snipers to kill suspected criminals.
The tough-talking Davao City mayor said security forces would be given “shoot-to-kill” orders and that citizens would learn to fear the law.
“Those who destroy the lives of our children will be destroyed,” Duterte said, outlining his war on crime once he is sworn into office on June 30. “Those who kill my country will be killed. Simple as that. No middle ground. No apologies. No excuses.”
Duterte also vowed to roll out Davao law-and-order measures on a nationwide basis, including a 2am curfew on drinking in public places and a ban on children walking on the streets alone late at night. Smoking in restaurants and hotels is also to be banned.
Duterte said a central part of his war on crime would be to bring back the death penalty, which was abolished in 2006 under then-Philippine president Gloria Arroyo.
Duterte said he would ask the Philippine Congress to reintroduce capital punishment for a wide range of crimes, including drug trafficking, rape, murder, robbery and kidnapping-for-ransom. He said he prefers death by hanging to a firing squad, because he does not want to waste bullets and he believes snapping the spine with a noose is more humane.
For people convicted of two major crimes, Duterte said he wanted them hanged twice.
“After you are hanged first, there will be another ceremony for the second time until the head is completely severed from the body. I like that, because I am mad,” he said.
The centerpiece of Duterte’s stunningly successful election campaign was a pledge to end crime within three to six months of being elected.
Duterte vowed during the campaign to kill tens of thousands criminals, outraging his critics, but hypnotizing tens of millions of Filipinos fed up with rampant crime and graft.
He said on one occasion that 100,000 people would die, adding that so many bodies would be dumped in Manila Bay that the fish would grow fat from feeding on them.
In an initial news conference late on Sunday, Duterte said his “shoot-to-kill” orders would be given for those involved in organized crime or who resisted arrest.
On his ban on children walking alone late at night, Duterte said the parents of repeat offenders would be arrested and thrown into jail for “abandonment.”
Philippine President Benigno Aquino III repeatedly said during the Philippine presidential election campaign that Duterte was a dictator in the making and would bring terror to the nation.
Duterte has been accused of running vigilante death squads during his more than two decades as mayor of Davao, a city of about 2 million people that Duterte said he has turned into one of the nations safest.
Rights groups say the squads — made up of police, hired assassins and ex-communist rebels — have killed more than 1,000 people, with children and petty criminals among the victims.
Duterte also made international headlines for constant use of vulgar language, including on one occasion branding the pope a “son of a whore.”
SWITCH TO BEIJING: The government severed diplomatic relations about an hour after Honduras announced the move, saying that no semi-official ties would be maintained Taiwan severed diplomatic ties with Honduras and ended all cooperation with the Central American country, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday, about an hour and a half after the Honduran Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Twitter at 8am Taiwan time that the nation would cut its ties with Taiwan. Honduran President Xiomara Castro on Wednesday sent Honduran Minister of Foreign Affairs Eduardo Enrique Reina to Beijing to negotiate the establishment of diplomatic relations. She announced the plan on March 14 on Twitter. “To safeguard Taiwan’s sovereignty and dignity, Taiwan is terminating diplomatic ties with Honduras with immediate effect” after communication with
TRADE MISSION: After Fijian elections in December last year, pro-democratic parties formed a coalition and overruled a name change imposed by the former government The Taipei Trade Office in Fiji has been restored to its former name, the Trade Mission of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to the Republic of Fiji, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday. Fiji on Friday last week issued a note verbale to the office saying that the name change was retroactively effective from March 15, Department of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Director-General Wallace Chow (周民淦) told a news conference in Taipei. The mission’s diplomatic privileges have been reinstated as stipulated in Fiji’s Diplomatic Privileges and Immunities Act, which was enacted in 1971, Chow said. Taiwan set up a trade
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday departed for a 12-day trip to China as scheduled, despite calls for him to cancel the trip after Honduras severed diplomatic ties with Taiwan as an apparent result of China’s dollar diplomacy. “This is my first trip to China. I was 37 when I began handling cross-strait affairs in the government. Now I am 73 and have waited 36 years for the visit. It is indeed a bit too long, but I am glad I can go,” Ma of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) told reporters at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. “Aside from paying respects to
‘INDISPENSABLE ROLE’: Despite stopovers in the US, Tsai said the aim of her trip is to ‘demonstrate determination to deepen exchanges’ with the allies of the nation President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday afternoon left Taiwan on a 10-day trip to Central America that includes stopovers in New York and Los Angeles. “Through this visit, I will express my gratitude to diplomatic partners for their support of Taiwan,” Tsai said at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport shortly before boarding the plane. The trip to Guatemala and Belize — her first overseas journey since the COVID-19 pandemic began sweeping around the world in early 2020 — aims to “demonstrate Taiwan’s determination to deepen exchanges” with its Central American allies, she said. Tsai said that she and her delegation would also explore the possibility