Enforcer of Philippine drug war defends police killing of toddler

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on July 5, 2019 - Duration: 02:04s

Enforcer of Philippine drug war defends police killing of toddler

A former police general who oversaw the bloodiest years of the Philippines' war on drugs has shrugged off the killing by police of a three-year-old girl in a sting operation.

Joe Davies reports.

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Enforcer of Philippine drug war defends police killing of toddler

***EDITORS NOTE: CONTAINS PROFANITY*** The latest victim of the Philippines' war on drugs.

Myca Ulpina was just three-years-old.

She was gunned down a week ago by police targeting her father, a suspected drug dealer, during a sting operation.

Police say he tried to use her as a human shield.

Now the man who oversaw the bloodiest years of the Philippines' war on drugs - a man who's since become a senator - has shrugged off the killing of an innocent child, and defended the police who did it.

(SOUNDBITE) (English/Filipino) PHILIPPINE SENATOR AND FORMER POLICE CHIEF, RONALD DELA ROSA, ANSWERING QUESTION ABOUT RULES OF ENGAGEMENT DURING KILLING OF THREE-YEAR-OLD : "Rules of engagement?

Of course, you really need to secure things first so that there will be no collateral damage at all, but like I said, we are in an imperfect world.

If you are police, do you want a child to get hit?

Never, because you also have children.

But shit happens.

During operations, shit happens." Tears pouring from her eyes, Myca Ulpina's mother joined fellow mourners at her funeral on Thursday (June 4).

She rejects the police's version of events that led to the death of her little girl.

Her husband didn't resist arrest, she says, they were all asleep when the police arrived.

She now fears for her life.

(SOUNDBITE) (Filipino) MOTHER OF THREE-YEAR-OLD DRUG WAR VICTIM, LYDJAY ACOPIO, SAYING: "I am a bit scared for myself because my enemy is not just anybody.

I want to fight but I ask myself 'how?'

As for my security, I'm afraid I may have to leave my children." More than two dozen countries are now calling for a United Nations investigation into the Philippines' bloody crackdown on drugs.

The first time that the Human Rights Council has been asked to address the crisis.

Police say they've killed more than 5,000 suspected drug dealers - and that all of them were armed and resisted arrest.

Activists say the fatalities could be closer to 27,000.

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