Manila, Oct 9 (EFE).- Former Philippines senator Leila de Lima, critic of former president Rodrigo Duterte, was taken hostage during a prisoner escape attempt Sunday morning at a prison near Manila.
“Following this morning’s incident at Camp Crame, I will be speaking to Senator De Lima to check on her condition and to ask if she wishes to be transferred to another detention center,” President Ferdinand Marcos wrote on Twitter.
At 6.30 am, three inmates attacked an officer who was delivering food to a common area, and stabbed him with an improvised knife, state news agency PNA reported, citing police.
During the incident de Lima was taken hostage by one of the attackers.
All three were “neutralized” by security forces, while the official was taken to hospital in critical condition.
Officials assure that de Lima is safe and was given a health checkup, and the situation in the prison has returned to normal.
The former justice secretary and staunch Duterte critic was transferred to preventive detention on Feb. 24, 2017 on drugs charges described by human rights groups as political persecution.
Before her arrest, de Lima had spent a decade investigating “death squad” killings allegedly orchestrated by Duterte during his time as mayor of the southern city of Davao and in the early days of his presidency.
Duterte, who completed his six-year term in mid-2022, ran a brutal nationwide anti-drug campaign that has left more than 6,000 people dead, according to the police. NGOs raise the figure above 27,000 deaths, amid complaints of summary executions. EFE