“The military proves that Duterte’s ‘shoot the vagina’ remark is a brutal war policy.”
By JANESS ANN J. ELLAO
MANILA — Not too long ago, President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the shooting of female armed guerrilla fighters in their vaginas to render them “useless.” He later defended his remark – one of the many he issued against women – as mere sarcasm.
Last week, Gabriela Women’s Party deplored the desecration of the remains of an alleged New People’s Army female fighter Cindy Tirado, whose remains were found to be desecrated as her genitals appeared to be shattered by a bullet.
Tirado was among those killed in an alleged military operation led by the 71st Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army on April 15 in Tagum City, Davao del Norte.
Apart from her genitals being shot, the women’s group also noted that her arms were fractured, indicating possible torture.
Tirado’s grieving mother Emma, in an interview with a national daily, noted that her daughter was most probably captured alive and tortured before she was killed.
Rape incidents on the rise
Apart from the “shoot in the vagina” remark, Duterte has not been sitting well among many women’s group due to what they said are anti-women pronouncements.
He has repeatedly “joked” at the expense of women or on the issue of rape.
Such pronouncements, critics said, contribute to the poor regards for women and their rights in the country.
In a report earlier this year, the Center for Women’s Resources said there were 2,962 cases of rape or about 20 incidents per day from January to May 2018 alone.
Among the cities with the highest number of rape incidents in 2018 were Quezon City, Manila, and Davao.
There are also 59 cops implicated in the cases of violence against women from July 2016 to December 2018, the CWR report added.
Independent probe sought
Meanwhile, Gabriela Women’s Party called for an independent probe, saying that this constitutes a war crime and violation of international humanitarian law, adding that those involved must be probed over its apparent excessive use of force and possible sexual violence.