Duterte calls EU naive; hits EU for calling De Lima a political prisoner; acknowledges his influence on vigilantism
President Rodrigo Duterte said on Wednesday he felt sorry for the members of the European Parliament for being naive because they consider Senator Leila de Lima, his staunch critic, as a political prisoner.
"I'm being castigated by the EU. This EU, for their being naivete, I pity those guys," Duterte said in a speech in Socorro, Oriental Mindoro.
He described the European Parliament for being "foolish, terrible."
He wondered why the EU Parliament believes De Lima is a political prisoner and needs to be released from detention.
"EU wants (de Lima) to be released because according to them she's a political prisoner...now they want me to be in jail. Fool. Son of a bitch, because they said I have ordered the killings of many, 10,000?," Duterte said.
Duterte recalled when he was mayor of Davao City for 23 years, there could be 600 people who were really killed. But he justified these by saying they were "criminals killed in action."
The president said he never ordered to kill anyone who was on "bended knees."
The EU Parliament came out with a resolution raising concern on the alleged extrajudicial killings of those allegedly involved in illegal drugs and for the release of De Lima, who is facing charges for alleged involvement in the proliferation of illegal drugs in the national penitentiary. De Lima denied the allegation.
Over 7,000 individuals allegedly involved in illegal drugs have been killed since Duterte assumed office in June. But the president denied that all of them died in the hands of the policemen.
In the same speech, Duterte said he would make sure when he steps down as president, the drug problem is solved.
He again warned those who remain into drugs to surrender now and enter the rehabilitation centers, such as the one in Nueva Ecija, which could accommodate up to 10,000 patients. Otherwise, they would be killed.
"That vigilantes. they are true. They got it from me," he said.
There were threats for Duterte to be hailed before the International Criminal Court for the killings of drug suspects.
Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella, in a statement, said the ICC could not arbitrarily interfere in the domestic affairs of a sovereign country like the Philippines .
"There is no concrete evidence pointing to crimes against humanity here: such crimes must be widespread and systematically directed against a specific group. This element is absent in the Philippine situation," he said.
The Philippine Senate absolved Duterte and there exists no such crime, Abella added. Celerina Monte/DMS