Se­cu­rity forces alerted ahead of tense Philip­pine polls

Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

MANILA— Se­cu­rity forces fanned out across the Philip­pines Sun­day on the eve of na­tional polls, fol­low­ing a vi­cious and deadly elec­tion cam­paign dom­i­nated by pres­i­den­tial favourite Ro­drigo Duterte’s threats to kill thou­sands of crim­i­nals. Sur­veys show Duterte, mayor of the south­ern city of Davao, has a clear lead in Mon­day’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tions as mil­lions of vot­ers em­brace his threats to un­leash se­cu­rity forces in an un­prece­dented crime spree, and shut down Congress if law­mak­ers op­pose him.

Pres­i­dent Benigno Aquino, who is lim­ited to a sin­gle sixyear term, has likened Duterte to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler and warned of a loom­ing dic­ta­tor­ship, with the pres­i­den­tial ten­sions fu­elling an al­ready volatile and vi­o­lent po­lit­i­cal cul­ture.

“Their rhetoric is quite vi­cious, their ex­changes are quite vi­cious and this is a sig­nal to a lot of sup­port­ers to up the ante and be more ag­gres­sive,” Eric Alvia, head of the watch­dog group, Na­tional Cit­i­zens Movement for Free Elec­tions, told AFP. “This cam­paign has been di­vi­sive and its po­lar­is­ing a lot of peo­ple. They ( feel they) can do what­ever they want.”

Duterte has ac­cused Aquino’s ad­min­is­tra­tion of plan­ning “mas­sive cheat­ing” to en­sure that his pre­ferred— Age­nies

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