Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte allows police and soldiers to shoot “troublemakers” against the backdrop of the Covid-19 epidemic.
Speaking on television evening 1-4, Duterte said police and soldiers would take a tough approach to “troublemakers” on Luzon island, including shooting. The largest and most populous island in the Philippines was frozen last month.
“I will not hesitate. I order the police and soldiers that if trouble or situation arises, shoot them to death. Instead of causing trouble, I will send you to the grave” – Mr. Duterte to speak.
A few hours ago, 21 Quezon City residents – mostly low-income workers – were arrested by authorities for protesting without permission. The Philippines Workers’ Union (BMP) condemns Manila for targeting the poor who are seeking assistance during the Covid-19 crisis.
In response, Mr. Duterte demanded that the people in need of assistance be patient, urging them to wait for delivery. However, he also warned them not to threaten and challenge the government.
The blockade on Luzon Island restricts residents from moving outside to buy food, medicine and other essentials. All operations are closed except for important industries. Schools and shopping malls are not open, while people are prohibited from gathering and are required to stay home.
The Philippines is recording 2,311 infections and 96 deaths due to Covid-19 as of April 2.
Several other Asian countries are also actively taking measures to help repel Covid-19. In Indonesia, starting from 2-4, the country’s largest international airport, Soekarno-Hatta, will prohibit foreign visitors from entering and not allowing transit.
Jakarta announced a 22-25% corporate tax reduction this year, preparing to release about 30,000 prisoners, suspending visa-free policies for all countries for a month. Indonesia currently has 1,677 infections and 157 deaths due to Covid-19.
Thailand has also declared a state of emergency on the Covid-19 epidemic, and approved a $ 3.25 billion stimulus package. Bangkok announced the closure of its land border starting early next week to limit the spread of the virus. The country recorded 1,771 infections and 12 deaths from Covid-19 as of April 2.