Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Duterte offers bounty for rebels to save on war costs

Duterte offers bounty for rebels to save on war costs

The Philippine president has offered a almost $500 bounty for each communist rebel killed by government forces to save on anti-insurgency costs and says insurgents are easier to hit than birds because they have bigger heads. Duterte said, again eliciting laughter from the crowd. He did not explain how his government would pay the bounty.

Duterte, addressing a group of former communist rebels Wednesday, referred to his time as mayor before becoming president and ordered the soldiers to render the women "useless" by shooting their vaginas. "If you can shoot a bird above you, then how much more an NPA whose head is so big?"

His remarks have come just days after he asked the Filipino troops to shoot female communist rebels in their vaginas.

"This enduring friendship has contributed to our rich culture, stimulated trade between our nations and fortified the foundation of our continuing quest for economic development", he said. "These are words of a thug or a goon, who reigns like a king in our country".

"Duterte's latest nasty remark openly encourages violence against women, contributes to the impunity on such, and further confirms himself as the most unsafe macho-fascist in the government right now", Gabriela representative Emmi de Jesus said.

The President turned up rhetoric against communist guerrillas after peace talks brokered by Norway collapsed previous year when he protested the continuing rebel attacks on government forces.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) said that these recurring statements that looked to demean women - and victims of sexual violence - ran the danger of normalising misogyny while also encouraging war crimes.

Meanwhile, the International Criminal Court (ICC) has begun preliminary examinations to see whether there is sufficient evidence to establish that a complaint filed against Duterte and his administration regarding the drug war falls under its jurisdiction.

While referring to a locally formed group known as Citizen Armed Forces Geographical Unit, he said: "Give me about three months, I'll train them as Cafgu members". "The war or the drive against drugs will not stop and it will last until the day I step out", he said.

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