MANILA, Philippines – The United States called for "full accountability" in the killing of 17-year-old Kian delos Santos, as Philippine authorities probe his death at the hands of the Caloocan City police.
"My condolences go out to the family and friends of Kian," US Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim said in a tweet on Tuesday, August 22.
Kim said he hopes "that the investigations lead to full accountability."
Delos Santos was a Grade 11 student killed in a drug raid in Caloocan City last August 16. Police claimed Delos Santos fought back using a gun, but witnesses said the student was a victim of a police frame-up. (READ: 'Nakaluhod tapos nasubsob': How Kian was shot, according to PAO)
The US ambassador made his remarks even as Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte slams the US for supposedly interfering in his war on drugs.
Kim spoke, however, after Duterte himself also backed an investigation into Delos Santos' death.
Duterte said on Monday, August 21, that if the investigation proves police murdered Delos Santos, the cops involved will "rot in jail."
Delos Santos' death has fueled outrage against the killings in the President's drug war, with protesters gathering at the People Power Monument on Monday to condemn drug-related killings under Duterte. (READ: After Kian delos Santos slay, OFWs urged to 'reflect on Duterte's flaws') – Rappler.com
Paterno R. Esmaquel II, news editor of Rappler, specializes in covering religion and foreign affairs. He obtained his MA Journalism degree from Ateneo and later finished MSc Asian Studies (Religions in Plural Societies) at RSIS, Singapore. For story ideas or feedback, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.