Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said: "The Philippines takes grave exception to the irresponsible and disrespectful comments of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights that cast untoward aspersions regarding the President of the Republic of the Philippines".
In the same press briefing, Lu said "anyone without bias can see that President Duterte has made positive efforts since assuming office to combat drug-related crimes, as well as terrorism, develop the national economy, and improve people's livelihood, which have effectively protected and promoted the Philippine people's fundamental rights to security and development".
Police say they have killed almost 4,000 drug suspects as part of the campaign, while rights groups claim the toll is around three times the numbers given by authorities. Some translations of this statement strive to make it clear he was indeed suggesting that human rights investigators should be fed to crocodiles.
Roque came to Duterte's defense after the latter, in a speech delivered in Zamboanga City on March 10, threatened United Nations special rapporteurs who will conduct an investigation into his bloody war on drugs to "throw them to the crocodiles".
Human Rights Council must take a position. "Do not bother", Duterte said on March 2. "You can not acquire jurisdiction over me, not in a million years", he said.
"Just say, 'Duterte ordered it: destroy the organization.' So what's wrong with that?"
It included Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, UN special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, who was listed as a senior member of a Maoist rebel group.
Corpuz was appointed as a UN expert in 2014 and served as former chair of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
Tauli-Corpuz, appointed in 2014 as United Nations special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, was listed in the petition as a senior member of the Maoist rebel group.
"Tauli-Corpuz and the other individuals mentioned in the petition are there due to their membership in or association with the CPP-NPA as reported over the years by the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)", Cayetano pointed out.
Also on the list were four former Catholic priests and former congressman Satur Ocampo, who said he would challenge any "terrorist" label.
But Tauli-Corpuz fears "parallels" between the name-and-shame, trigger-happy tenor of the war on drugs and the publicizing of the government's list, which she worries could encourage would-be hitmen.
Concluding the statement, Cayetano noted that the "world actually needs more Dutertes―leaders with empathy; leaders who listen to their people; and leaders who are ready to sacrifice their lives to protect their people".