Philippines Prez Draws Flak For Comment On Women Rebels

Rodrigo Duterte Encouraging Sexual Abuse

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte drawing contempt for his comments against women rebels. He said soldiers should render women rebels useless by shooting them in the vagina. He was addressing a crowd which included 200 former rebels.

Duterte said he was frustrated that women were giving up their duty to raise children and instead joining the communist rebel group New People’s Army.

Tell the soldiers, ‘There’s a new order coming from the mayor,’” said Duterte, referring to his former role as mayor of Davao City. “‘We will not kill you. We will just shoot you in the vagina.’”

He said that he would pay soldiers $400 for every NPA personnel they killed. Duterte has allegedly employed death squads to murder drug users as part of his anti-drug campaign during his mayoral tenure.

Obviously, his comments have received a lot of flak. Cristina Palabay of the rights group Karapatan spoke out against his comments. 

“Duterte has distinguished himself as a frothing-in-the-mouth fascist who incites the worst violations of international humanitarian law. His recent comments and pronouncements are but the latest of the series of these madman’s display of tyranny, lunacy and machismo,” Palaby said. 

Carlos H.Conde, researcher for Human Rights Watch, said,It encourages state forces to commit sexual violence during armed conflict, which is a violation of international humanitarian law.”

This isn’t the first time Duterte has made such comments. During his presidential campaign in 2016, he joked about the rape and murder of an Australian missionary by inmates during a prison riot in 1989, Davao City.  “I was angry because she was raped. That’s one thing. But she was so beautiful. The mayor should have been first,” he said.

He has attacked women who have questioned his war on drugs. One of these was Leila deLima, who is a former justice minister. She is awaiting trial on bribery charges. During the hearings, Duterte allegedly revealed embarrassing details about her affairs with her driver and bodyguard.

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Picture Credit: NDTV