Thousands of Filipinos in the US and in the Philippines took to the streets calling “Justice for Kian.”
A few days later, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte met with the parents of Kian De Los Santos – the 11th grader who was killed last August 16 in the president’s bloody war on drugs.
His death has drawn more attention to allegations that the Philippine national police has been involved in the systematic execution of suspected drug users and dealers, which the PNP denied.
Radio TV Malacanang provided photos and a muted video of the Duterte meeting with the parents, but details of the discussion were not available at this time.
Last Friday — the De Los Santos family has filed a complaint for murder against Caloocan City police officers involved in the killing of the young schoolboy.
Chief inspector Amor Cerillo, and PO-3 Arnel Oares, PO-1 Jerwin Cruz, and PO-1 Jeremias Pereda are the 3 officers tagged in the teen’s death.
Oares, Cuz, and Pereda were also charged with violation of the anti-torture law, according to ABS-CBN News.
And in this photo on Monday, Kian’s mother and father are now shown holding the popular Duterte fist sign after their meeting with the president.
On Monday, the president also reminded the police that while local killing is not allowed, they are free to kill what he called “idiots” who resist arrest.
“Murder and homicide, or whatever, and local killing is not allowed. But in the performance of your duty, tell your men that whenever their life is in danger and they are in the actual performance of a duty, your duty requires you to overcome the resistance of the person you’re arresting,” Duterte said. “Not only just shouting at him to surrender, because if he does not and he resists, and it is a violent one, placing in jeopardy the lives of my policemen, and of course the military, you are free to kill the idiots.”
Meanwhile in New York, a vigil was held to remember Kian and all the thousands of victims of the Philippines’ war on drugs over the weekend.
The death of the 17-year-old sparked public outrage and calls for a review of the president’s brutal war on drugs.
“Continuing the drug war, that’s just denying people their right to life, their right to liberty and their right to due process, and denying their presumption of innocence,” said Rodrigo Bacus, from the New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines. “We should look at making fundamental changes in the Philippines.”
Protesters say they have this message for the president: make sure the rights of the Filipino people are upheld, because the rights to liberty, life, and due process are not just fundamental, but universal.