Duterte offers kill bounty for rebels to save on war costs

Protesters display lip-shaped cutouts with their message during a Valentine's Day rally to denounce President Rodrigo Duterte's use of vulgarities as the country's leader Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018 in Manila, Philippines. Human rights groups have condemned the Philippine president for saying that troops should shoot female communist rebels in the genitals to render them "useless," which they said could encourage sexual violence and war crimes. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)
Protesters cut President Rodrigo Duterte's "tongues" which allegedly represent his often derogatory statements towards women during a Valentine's Day rally Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018 in Manila, Philippines. Human rights groups have condemned the Philippine president for saying that troops should shoot female communist rebels in the genitals to render them "useless," which they said could encourage sexual violence and war crimes. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine president has offered a nearly $500 bounty for each communist rebel killed by government forces to save on anti-insurgency costs and says insurgents are easier to hit than birds because they have bigger heads.

President Rodrigo Duterte's latest crass remarks came after human rights groups condemned him this week for saying troops should shoot female communist guerrillas in the genitals to render them "useless."

Human Rights Watch says Duterte's incendiary remarks encourage government forces to commit war crimes instead of instilling a culture of accountability in accordance with the law.

Duterte is already under international criticism and is facing a preliminary investigation by the International Criminal Court for thousands of deaths in the war on drugs he had launched shortly after assuming power two years ago.

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