In 2016 the Philippine's President Duterte declared a "War on Drugs" that has killed over 12,000 people. About 20 percent of those people have died at the hands of the Philippine National Police. Duterte as well as other senior officials have encouraged the violence. Dozens of children have been killed and targeted. There is evidence of falsified information used to justify the killings
Within seven weeks of President Duterte taking office about 1,800 alleged criminals were killed by police or by others. Duterte had made public announcements giving citizens the right to shoot drug dealers if they had a gun themselves and to forget about laws on human rights. He also vowed to kill 100,000 criminals within his first 6 months of office. Duterte had also likened himself to Hitler saying that he would be happy to slaughter millions of drug addicts.
Within 100 days of office Duterte's campaign on the "War on Drugs" killed 3,000 people. He had encouraged others to kill drug addicts and offered bounties to people that turn in drug lords whether dead or alive. Besides the supposed criminals, innocent bystanders have become victims. Two men shot and killed a five year old in a case of mistaken identity. Duterte had also publicized kill lists of drug users or those involved with the drug trade without substantial evidence.
From October 2016 through January 2017 Philippine National Police killed at least 32 people with falsified evidence as part of the Duterte's campaign. Police killed unarmed drug suspects and afterwards planted guns, ammunition, and drug packets to justify the killings. Several of the victims were drug users and not drug dealers. In all but one case, the victims were poor; either unemployed or had menial jobs. The police involved were not prosecuted for their crimes.
Several of the bodies of drug suspects in the Philippines have been dumped in the Manila Bay. Police have been ordering fisherman to take out the "trash" and dispose of the bodies. One fisherman who disposed of 20 bodies said sometimes they put weights on them so they wouldn't float up. Diornardo Carlos, a spokesperson for the police, said they would investigate and if it were true they wouldn't allow any member of the police organization to continue doing so.
In September 2017 thousands protested against President Duterte's war on drugs. The protesters want him to focus on institutional reform. The violence has been targeting the poor and police or paid killers have been making money off the killings. Witnesses have found police stealing money or other valuables and some have been paid under the table for killing the supposed drug offenders. Despite the protests many are still supporting Duterte because the focus has been in poor areas and they remain unaffected.