The Philippine Star

Palace disputes peace index report


Malacañang yesterday disputed the results of this year’s Global Peace Index (GPI), which suggested that the Philippine­s is among the least peaceful countries in the world because of extrajudic­ial killings and internal conflict.

The Philippine­s ranked 138th among 163 nations included in the 2017 GPI, which measures the state of global peace through indicators that were categorize­d under domestic and internatio­nal conflict, societal safety and security and militariza­tion.

The country’s peace ranking was the second lowest in the Asia-Pacific, only better than the totalitari­an state North Korea, which ranked 150th.

Presidenti­al spokesman Ernesto Abella said the GPI findings might have reflected a political slant, noting that the Duterte administra­tion received very favorable scores in local polls.

“We’re not entirely sure where the GPI, Global Peace Index analyst… who apparently is supposed to be a local, is really coming from. Maybe there’s a political slant somewhere,” Abella said in a press briefing in Malacañang.

“But based on results, the net satisfacti­on of Filipino peo- ple is quite high,” he added.

Abella said previous surveys had indicated that 75 percent of Filipinos were happy with the Duterte administra­tion’s performanc­e, 62 percent were satisfied with its campaign against crime, 64 percent were satisfied with its fight against terrorism and 76 percent were happy with its effort to help the poor.

He also cited a recent survey suggesting that eight in 10 Filipinos feel safer because of the government’s war on illegal drugs.

According to the GPI report, the Philippine­s got low scores in societal safety and security indicators because of President Duterte’s “bloody war against drugs and crime (that) has been extended nationwide.”

“The Philippine­s’ homicide rate, incarcerat­ion rate and number of deaths from internal conflict have all deteriorat­ed. The extrajudic­ial killings of alleged criminals, drug mules and users have significan­tly increased security risks, even for ordinary citizens who could potentiall­y get caught in the crossfire,” the report read.

Previous reports claimed that 7,000 people have been killed because of the anti-drug crackdown but Philippine officials dispute this, saying only more than 1,000 cases of killings were found to be drug-related.

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