Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has invited the human rights arm of the UN to set up an office in the country to monitor the ongoing drug war.
The firebrand leader, who once threatened to burn down the global body for its accusations of serious human rights abuses, on Monday (18 September) said he would allow the UNHRC representatives and the media to witness police operations for the sake of transparency, the Philippines Star reported.
Duterte had launched deadly anti-narcotic operations ever since he took office in June 2016 targeting the notorious drug trade troubling the Southeast Asian nation. Thousands have lost their lives in the crackdown. Rights groups have alleged that most of them are murdered in extrajudicial killings.
Speaking about the incessant allegations against his government, Duterte said his administration was ready to cooperate with the UN officials.
"I will personally through an official channel invite the human rights commission to set up a satellite office here. They (UN) can have an investigator embedded in police operations. I will have no problem with that," said Duterte. He was speaking to reporters after visiting a slain policeman's house as the security personnel was recently killed during an anti-drug raid.
"I will tell police station commanders, do not operate without a representative of the UN human rights commission and everybody must wear a camera so it will all be transparent," Duterte insisted.
His tone was significantly different from his earlier tirade during when he chided the UN and other rights groups, who express concern over alleged human rights abuses in the country. At one point in time, he went to the extent of warning he would pull out of the UN if it continues to criticise the Manila government.
Duterte's latest remarks have also come days after his government faced criticism for allotting just $20 towards the country's Commission of Human Rights, which has been keeping a close watch on the drug war.