MANILA, Philippines — More than 1.4 million Filipino drug users have surrendered for rehabilitation in the Philippine government’s war against illegal drugs, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. reported before the United Nations’ (UN) Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) in Vienna, Austria on Thursday.
“With the war on drugs, the Philippines renews its commitment to the state responsibility to protect, first and foremost the law-abiding against the lawless by any means efficient, to achieve the defining purpose and expense of a state,” Locsin said at the 62nd session of the CND according to a statement released Friday by the Department of Foreign Affairs.
“To that responsibility my President has made an iron, unwavering and total commitment,” Locsin added.
The DFA said Locsin also noted a 30 percent decline in the country’s crime rate as a result of the government’s sustained and relentless anti-illegal drug campaign.
He also pointed out the “robust democratic mechanisms” within the country to ensure accountability and address impunity, such as the discipline and dismissal from service of erring law enforcers and the presence of human rights officers during police operations.
The Philippine foreign secretary, on the sidelines of the CND, met with United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Executive Director Yury Fedotov for possible expansion of the scope of capacity building and technical assistance projects to the Philippines, the DFA said.
The CND was attended by 34 cabinet ministers, high level representatives of member states and other key holders to jointly address and counter the world drug problem.
The Philippine delegation was composed of Locsin, Dangerous Drugs Board chair Catalino Cuy, and Ambassador and Permanent Representative Maria Cleofe Natividad.
Representatives from the Philippine Permanent Missions in Vienna and New York and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) also joined the delegation. /muf
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.