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More drug suspects yield during relaunch of ‘Tokhang’

There has been no armed confrontation between subject personalities and police operatives since the Philippine National Police (PNP) relaunched Oplan “Tokhang” in January.
Director Camilo Pancratius Cascolan, head of the PNP-Directorate for Operations (DO), said the resumption of “Tokhang” also resulted in huge number of surrenderers.
“Project Tokhang operations continued for the second straight week as the left-hand effort of demand reduction in the PNP’s flagship anti-illegal drugs drive, turning in huge number of surrenderers and no cases of armed confrontation with drug suspects, so far, since its reactivation on January 29,” Cascolan said.
From January 29 to February 14, the PNP consolidated 4,339 “Tokhang” activities with 2,137 surrenderers nationwide.
The PNP-DO noted that Police Regional Office 10 has the highest number of surrenderers with 730 individuals while there were 430 in National Capital Region Police Office.
On the other hand, from Dec. 5, 2017 to Feb. 14, 2018, police units arrested 7,103 drug personalities from 4,613 operations conducted with 65 died in police operations on PNP’s intensified anti-illegal drug campaign.
It will be recalled that President Duterte issued Memorandum Order No. 17 on Decmber 4 directing the PNP to rejoin the war against illegal drugs in support of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).
Prior to this, the PNP was twice ordered by Duterte to cease and desist from conducting anti-illegal drugs operation.
In January 2017, the President directed the PNP to stop all its anti-drugs operations after the killing of South Korean Jee Ick Joo right inside Camp Crame, the PNP’s National Headquarters, allegedly by members of the defunct Anti-Illegal Drugs Group.
Last October, Duterte also stopped the PNP from conducting “Tokhang” amid criticisms from both local and international human rights advocates who blamed the administration’s war on drugs for the thousands of alleged extra judicial killings in the country.
In relaunching “Tokhang” last month, PNP chief Director General Ronald de la Rosa emphasized that police operatives, whom he branded as “tokhangers,” must be in proper PNP uniform and led by a police commissioned officer and shall conduct operations from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday only.
In addition, de la Rosa also underscored that Oplan “Tokhang” persuasive efforts will be more active in the coming days and months and he assured the public of less bloody anti-drug operations.

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