FROM Phelim Kine
Trump invites Duterte to White House sparking controversy President Rodrigo Duterte Presidential Communications Operations Office Speaking to a group of Filipino workers returning from overseas a year ago, the president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, told them, "If you lose your job, I'll give you one. Kill all the drug addicts." In June, he said, "If you know of any addicts, go ahead and kill them yourself as getting their parents to do it would be too painful." Some eight or nine thousand Filipinos have died in extra-judicial killings. Now, President Trump has invited Duterte to visit the White House, after a phone call described as "warm" by Trump's aides. Phelim Kine, deputy director of the Asia Division of Human Rights Watch , considers the controversial invitation.
Duterte, citing Hitler, says he'd kill millions of drug addicts The new President of the Philippines shocked the world once again today by escalating his war-against-drugs rhetoric with a reference to the Holocaust. Never mind the historical consensus that Hitler killed six million Jews, gypsies and others. Phelim Kine is Deputy Director of the Asia Division of Human Rights Watch .
The sanction of contract killings in the Philippines In the Philippines, a new President’s war on drugs has turned a young mother into a killer for hire. President Duterte presents a chart illustrating the drug trade network of high level drug syndicates in the Philippines during a press conference, July 7, 2016 Photo: King Rodriguez/Presidential Communications Operation Office When he ran for President early this year, Rodrigo Duterte promised Filipinos that 100,000 drug criminals would be killed during his first six months in office. He has sanctioned extra-judicial killings — and even offered bounties. The result has been a dramatic increase in homicides, including the killing of dead-beat customers by drug pushers — including police officers. Phelim Kine is Deputy Director of the Asia Division of Human Rights Watch .
Philippine’s President Duterte Orders Drug Dealers Deaths In last month’s inaugural address as President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte said his war on drugs would be “relentless” and “sustained.” Since he took office, at least 100 suspected drug dealers have been killed by local police and vigilantes—without any judicial proceedings. The National Police Chief says calls for a Senate investigation are “legal harassment.”
Is China's Communist Party Putting Itself on Trial? China's trial of the century is not following the political script that was widely predicted. On Day One, former Communist Party honcho Bo Xilai vigorously defended himself, and claimed his bribery confessions had been coerced. It's a crucial event for new Party Chief, Xi Jinping, against a background of public outrage over corruption and demands to restore the era of Mao Tse Dung. Will a trial that dramatizes graft and economic inequality lead to reform? Will it make any difference in China's relations with the US and the rest of the world?
Chinese Artist Ai Weiwei Released, but Still under Investigation Chinese artist Ai Weiwei is the highest-profile anti-government critic arrested during a months-long political crackdown. Yesterday he was released after weeks of detention and alleged confession, but told Reuters , "I'm sorry I can't [talk], I am on probation, please understand." Phelim Kine, Asia researcher with Human Rights Watch , discusses the conditions under which he’ll now have to live.
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.