MANILA, Sept. 2 (Xinhua) — Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is set to explain his government’s war on illegal drugs before the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and other partner countries at the Laos Summit, a senior government official said Friday.
Department of Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary for ASEAN Affairs Ma. Hellen dela Vega said part of the Philippine key priorities for the Summit would be “drug-free ASEAN.”
“He will explain to the international community the problem that we had, how it impacts on the social fabric of our society. And the problem could even affect us in the future,” she said in a news briefing in Malacanang, the presidential palace.
Duterte’s attendance to the 28th and 29th ASEAN Summit and related Summits in Vientiane on September 6 to 8 will be his first since he assumed office on June 30.
UN Rapporteur human rights experts were among the first to criticize Duterte for the extrajudicial killings of drug suspects in the country.
Duterte even threatened that the Philippines would pull out from the UN.
More than 2,000 drug suspects have already been killed since July 1 and most of them were allegedly perpetrated by vigilantes.
Duterte has vowed to eliminate illegal drugs in the country within the first three to six months of his administration.