Robredo urges authorities to probe drug-related extrajudicial killings

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Vice President Leni Robredo wants to combat illegal drugs in the country – but not to the expense of innocent people. (file photo)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Vice President Leni Robredo on Thursday joined calls to investigate alleged extrajudicial killings of suspected drug dealers and users.

Robredo said she has always been vocal against extrajudicial killings.

Yung Congress nagpahayag na ng interes na mag-conduct ng investigations. Feeling ko, ano iyan, within their mandate also," Robredo said.

[Translation: "Congress has expressed interest in conducting investigations. I think that's within their mandate also."]

Sen. Leila de Lima, the human rights watchdog Amnesty International, and the human rights lawyers’ group National Union of People’s Lawyer are among those also calling for a probe of the killings, including those by police in their anti-drug operations.

"I think, sa akin, it is within the mandate of the executive na hayaan din ‘yung Department of Justice, o siguro ‘yung PNP or DILG to handle this," Robredo said.

[Translation: "I think it is within the mandate of the executive to let the Department of Justice or maybe PNP or DILG to handle this."]

Also read: Panelo: De Lima out to discredit police operations vs drug suspects

In a statement Tuesday, Robredo said she supports President Rodrigo Duterte’s campaign against illegal drugs, but expressed concern "with the growing culture of vigilantism and violence."

Robredo believes Duterte does not condone vigilante-style of executions.

She cited Duterte's inaugural speech, where the President said the rule of law will be followed.

Kasi hindi naman puwedeng pabayaan. Kasi kapag hinayaan natin ‘yong mga tao na to take the law into their hands, baka maraming inosente na madamay," Robredo said.

[Translation: "We cannot allow this. If we let people take the law into their own hands, innocent people might be affected."]

Robredo said she plans to bring up the issue with the President during the next Cabinet meeting.

Related: Robredo thanks Duterte for Cabinet post