Philippine police said Wednesday they have adopted special measures, including body cameras, to reduce violence in anti-narcotics operations as the International Criminal Court investigates allegations of thousands of extrajudicial killings in President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war. Five days after the ICC launched a preliminary examination of the alleged murders, authorities said the number of suspects shot dead by law enforcement personnel had risen to more than 4,000. Critics allege the fiery Duterte, who has vowed to kill tens of thousands of criminals to rid Philippine society of drugs, is goading police to murder suspects through inflammatory statements. “We are confident that this time, police-intensive operations against illegal drugs will be carried out with greater efficiency and with less violent confrontations between law enforcers and offenders,” national police spokesman John Bulalacao said. While the campaign is not expected to be entirely “bloodless”, the government has adopted certain measures — including more training and body cameras — to minimise bloodshed, Bulalacao told a news conference. Duterte suspended police participation in the crackdown twice last year due to controversial killings that led to a public backlash against his anti-narcotics campaign. Bulalacao said police adopted the extra safeguards in December last year after Duterte authorised the force to rejoin his drug war. The ICC’s initial inquiry is designed to help prosecutors determine if there is enough evidence of crimes that fall into its jurisdiction. It could lead to a full probe and eventually charges. Published in Daily Times, February 15th 2018.