MANILA, Philippines – The death toll for this week now stands at 81 as Metro Manila Northern Police District (NPD) conducted their own anti-drug and anti-criminality operation from the afternoon of Thursday, August 17 to early morning of Friday, August 18.
After 20 encounters, 24 drug suspects were killed and 36 were detained. Some cops were wounded according to the NPD report released to the media.
The northern police handles the Camanava quadrant, encompassing Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas, and Valenzuela.
The breakdown in apprehension by units is as follows:
Among those killed in the overnight drug sweep is 17-year old Kian Loyd Delos Santos who was supposedly a drug runner – yet unlisted in any drug watch lists – who allegedly fought back against police when he was apprehended.
However, CCTV camera recording and witness reports tell a different story: that the cops forced Kian to pull the trigger, run, and get shot. The accounts have lead to the temporary eviction of the 3 policemen involved in the operation.
The Camanava raids, the NPD report said, collected "assorted pieces of evidence" from the scene.
Third this week
The deadly operations, aligned with the administration's war against drugs and criminality, have sparked support and outrage.
President Rodrigo Duterte said the deaths were "good", while Malacañang pledged an independent investigation.
The Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa defended the operations, saying deaths are only "normal" given that suspects fight back.
Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.