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Marawi City Siege and Threats of Narcoterrorism in the Philippines

Threats of narcoterrorism have received very serious attention in the Philippine when the Philippine government under the administration of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte vigorously raised the menace in the aftermath of the 2 September 2016 Davao City bombing and the 23 May 2017 Marawi City siege. Though narcoterrorism has been a global problem since the 1980s, it takes almost four decades for the Philippine government to realize the gravity of this threat only in the aftermath of the siege of Marawi City by armed groups claiming to be part of the Islamic State (IS), more known initially as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). As a result, the Duterte Administration securitized narcoterrorism in his National Security Policy 2017-2022 and National Security Strategy 2018 declaring drugs and terrorism as national security threats.

As a concept, narcoterrorism remains to be very nebulous. As a threat, it arguably presents panoply of complex security challenges for law enforcement not only for the Philippines but also for the international community.

Other countries have been combating narcoterrorism for years with mixed results and unintended consequences. Based on great lessons learned from exemplary practices of other countries and cognizant of the Philippines’ own unique situations and experiences, the Duterte government needs to develop a more humane and socially responsible innovative anti-narcoterrorism approach that applies not only a strong law enforcement but also a decisive treatment through rehabilitation and care.

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Marawi City Siege and Threats of Narcoterrorism in the Philippines

  1. 1. MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES GlobalLessonsLearnedandPolicyOptions fortheDuterteGovernmentandBeyond Rommel C. Banlaoi, PhD
  2. 2. MarawiCitySiegeandThreatsof NarcoterrorisminthePhilippines: GlobalLessonsLearnedandPolicyOptions fortheDuterteGovernmentandBeyond Rommel C. Banlaoi, PhD
  3. 3. Dedicated to the memory of RODOLFO “BOOGIE” MENDOZA my friend, my mentor, my buddy, and the father of counter-terrorism investigation in the Philippines! We will continue your work and enrich your legacy as a true patriot
  4. 4. Marawi City Siege and Threats of Narcoterrorism in the Philippines: Global Lessons Learned and Policy Options for the Duterte Government and Beyond By Rommel C. Banlaoi, PhD Copyright@2018 by Rommel C. Banlaoi All rights reserved. Except for brief quotations for scholarly purposes, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, and recordings and/or otherwise without the prior written permission of the author. You may reach the author at rbanlaoi@pipvtr.com or rbanlaoi.pipvtr@gmail.com. Published by Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research (PIPVTR) Quezon City, Philippines www.pipvtr.com Recommended Bibliographic Entry: Rommel C. Banlaoi, Marawi City Siege and Threats of Narcoterrorism in the Philippines: Global Lessons Learned and Policy Options for the Duterte Government and Beyond (Quezon City: Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research, 2018). ISBN 978-971-93769-2-2
  5. 5. CONTENTS i ACKNOWLEDGEMENT ii PREFACE iii ABSTRACT 1 INTRODUCTION Terrorism, Drugs, and the Siege of Marawi City 3 What is Narcoterrorism? 5 Narcoterrorism: Global Situation 13 Countering Narcoterrorism: Global Lessons Learned 23 Marawi City Siege and its Aftermath: The Current State of Narcoterrorism in the Philippines 41 Countering Narcoterrorism: Policy Options and Alternatives for the Duterte Government and Beyond 49 CONCLUSION 51 NOTES 57 ABOUT THE AUTHOR 59 ABOUT THE PIPVTR
  6. 6. Acknowledgement Finishing this work was a difficult struggle as it came from a deep sorrow following the unexpected demise of a dear friend and an excellent mentor, Rodolfo “Boogie” Mendoza. Beforehisdeath,“KaBoogie”,asIfondlycalledhim,turnedovertomefilesofdocuments and personally handwritten notes describing his long investigative work on threats of insurgency and terrorism in the Philippines. I promised to organize these documents and notes to come out with a scholarly paper authored by him. Based from his notes and documents, Ka Boogie wanted me to write first a short paper on the New People’s Army (NPA) to coincide with the 50th founding anniversary of the NPA. Ka Boogie wanted me to underscore some changes and continuities of the NPA as a rebel army of Filipino communists and to highlight the growing alliance between the NPA and the Moro secessionist groups in the Southern Philippines, especially in the context of the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). I told him that I was finishing a publication on narcoterrorism and I promised that the short paper he requested would be next to my writing agenda. Boogie passed away without seeing the short paper he would have wanted me to write. But his instruction prompted me hurriedly finish this work on narcoterrorism so I can move on the paper on the NPA and its inextricable link with the Moro rebellion. I therefore thank Ka Boogie for his encouragement, support and inspiration. Without Ka Boogie, I would not have developed a solid niche in counter-terrorism research in the Philippines. I sincerely owe him a very deep debt of gratitude. I give to him my highest respect not only for being a sincere best friend, a true mentor, and a reliable buddy but also for being a genuine patriot – a trait worthy of emulation to us all. Ka Boogie’s views were oftentimes misunderstood, if not maligned, because he was ahead of his time. His out-of-the-box thinking spurred controversies because he was using an unfamiliar lens that only him could use. Like a fox, Ka Boogie could smell danger from afar. Like a fortuneteller, Ka Boogie could foresee ominous events like the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the Twin Tower of New York City. He also anticipated the Marawi City siege when he warned months before that followers were planning big and bold attacks to impress ISIS in an interview with
  7. 7. ABS-CBN News Channel (ANC). These prompted others to describe him as too alarmist. But he developed this one-of-a-kind attitude through many years of hard experiences as a spy par excellence of the Philippine government. Thus, Glenda Gloria would call him a “consummate spy”, a “bullheaded strategist and psywar expert” – an ”intelligence officer through and through.” For PIPVTR, Ka Boogie was our legendary James Bond, the spy who really loved this country until the last breathe of his life. He deliberately sacrificed his personal quality time with his family so he could offer more precious time for our country. Ka Boogie’s high sense of patriotism does not die with him. His patriotism lives on the younger colleagues, friends and followers who continue to believe in him and his legacies. We thank you Ka Boogie for setting a good example for us. We will raise the torch of patriotism that you instilled in us. This work evolves from the policy paper I wrote in 2016 for PCSupt. Albert Ignacius Ferro whom Ka Boogie also mentored. PCSupt. Ferro was serving then as Director of the now defunct Anti-Illegal Drugs Group (AIDG) of the Philippine National Police (PNP). I decided to update this policy paper when PCSupt. Ferro received his appointment as Director of the Drugs Enforcement Group (DEG) of the PNP. I am very grateful to PCSupt. Ferro for his continuing support and friendship. I have many colleagues and friends in the academe, government and intelligence community who also supported me in this work. I thank them all for the continuing assistance. But I would like to render special mention to Abu Hamdie and Billy who, until now, assist me in my counter-terrorism research activities. Most importantly, I thank my wife, Grace, for his strong patience, and profound understanding. Marrying an academic working on counter-terrorism research like me takes more courage and perseverance. I admire her so dearly for the enduring and unconditional love. I also acknowledge our three children: Zed, Zac and Zoe for the right behavior I needed when I was writing this work. My children always remind me to enjoy life with them. My children taught me how to combine work and leisure and achieve the quality work-life balance. Of course, if there is any factual inaccuracy, lapse in judgment, and substantive error arising from this work, the accountability is all mine. Though his work aims to help government develop sound policies in countering narcoterrorism, all views articulated in this work are my personal academic perspectives. Though this work uses some government sources as references, conclusions coming from this study do not represent any official position of the Philippine government.
  8. 8. Preface This work marks the first year of the Marawi City siege that began on 23 May 2017. This incident was the longest urban battle ever confronted by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). It took the AFP 154 days before it liberated Marawi City from armed groups that claimed to be followers of ISIS in the Philippines. The Marawi City siege was a game-changer in the history of Philippine counter- insurgency operations as the main battle area was an urban terrain and not a guerilla zone in the forested areas. For almost five decades, the Philippine government has fought armed insurgencies in the countryside. The Marawi City siege taught the Philippine military to also learn how to fight in the city. The Marawi City siege was also a mind-blowing incident as it strongly demonstrated the complex nexus of crime, insurgency and terrorism in the Philippines. For half a century after the Second World War, the Philippine government has fought crime, insurgency and terrorism separately from each other with a delineation of the function of the police and the military. In the aftermath of the siege, the Philippine government has truly realized the value of security convergence and the importance of comprehensive approach whether in the form of “whole-of-government”, “whole-of-society”, or “whole-of-nation” approaches. One of the major crimes exhibited during the Marawi City siege was the financing of terrorism from illegal drug operations. Scholars and experts describe this phenomenon as narcoterrorism where terrorism and illegal drug trafficking effectively converge. This study examines narcoterrorism in the Philippines using the case of the Marawi City siege. This is the first in a series of publications that the Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research (PIPVTR) intends to publish on the Marawi City siege. Forthcoming publications on the topic will include the role of foreign terrorist fighters and transnational organized crimes in the Marawi City siege. PIPVTR hopes to publish these forthcoming studies in October 2018 to mark the liberation of Marawi City from ISIS. It is an ardent desire of PIPVTR to see this present study adding value to our knowledge of the Marawi City siege. Through this study, PIPVTR also endeavors to contribute to policy development in order to counter the evolving threat of narcoterrorism confronting the Philippines and its neighbors.
  9. 9. Abstract Threats of narcoterrorism have received very serious attention in the Philippine when the Philippine government under the administration of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte vigorously raised the menace in the aftermath of the 2 September 2016 Davao City bombing and the 23 May 2017 Marawi City siege. Though narcoterrorism has been a global problem since the 1980s, it takes almost four decades for the Philippine government to realize the gravity of this threat only in the aftermath of the siege of Marawi City by armed groups claiming to be part of the Islamic State (IS), more known initially as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). As a result, the Duterte Administration securitized narcoterrorism in his National Security Policy 2017-2022 and National Security Strategy 2018 declaring drugs and terrorism as national security threats. As a concept, narcoterrorism remains to be very nebulous. As a threat, it arguably presents panoply of complex security challenges for law enforcement not only for the Philippines but also for the international community. Other countries have been combating narcoterrorism for years with mixed results and unintended consequences. Based on great lessons learned from exemplary practices of other countries and cognizant of the Philippines’ own unique situations and experiences, the Duterte government needs to develop a more humane and socially responsible innovative anti-narcoterrorism approach that applies not only a strong law enforcement but also a decisive treatment through rehabilitation and care.
  10. 10. INTRODUCTION Terrorism, Drugs, and the Siege of Marawi City When then Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Roa Duterte took office on 30 June 2016 as the 16th President of the Republic of the Philippines, he declared the “war on drugs” as his rallying cause.1 President Duterte even reiterated that the war on drugs would continue to be the centerpiece of his policy until the “dying days of my presidency, or my life.”2 While waging the war on drugs, President Duterte inevitably confronts the continuing battle against terrorist threats in the Philippines.3 The Davao City bombing on 2 September 2016 and the 23 May 2017 Marawi City siege have aptly unveiled the panoply of security threats facing the Philippines involving drugs and terrorism. Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief, Director General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa, has attributed the perpetrator of the Davao City bombing from narcoterrorism where drug money finances terrorism. Even part of the financing of the Marawi City siege by the Mindanao affiliates of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS)4 has also been linked with narco-politicians operating in Lanao del Sur. The Marawi City Siege is a seminal case in the Philippines where the complex nexus of illegal drug trade and terrorism exists. It is an epoch-making event in the Philippines that empirically demonstrates how drug money can also finance acts of terrorism. Because of the nexus of drugs and terrorism in the Marawi City Siege, President Duterte has securitized his war on drugs and his war on terrorism. In the National Security Policy 2017-2022, President Duterte declares drugs and terrorism as national security threats.5 In its national security goals and strategic objectives, the Duterte Administration intends to launch “holistic program” to combat illegal drugs, criminality, corruption, terrorism and transnationalcrimesinordertostrengthenpublicsafety,lawandorder,andtheadministration of justice in the Philippines. But what is narcoterrorism? How serious is the threat of narcoterrorism in the Philippines? This study describes the conceptual ramifications of narcoterrorism in order to inform policy makers and the greater public on its various meanings and understandings. It presents narcoterrorism not only as a domestic problem but also as a regional and global threat. To get lessons learned from international exemplary practices, this study also illustrates how other countries have confronted narcoterrorism. This study particularly underscores
  11. 11. 2 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES the results and consequences of various counter-measures initiated by other countries in order to provide the Philippine government vital inputs for policy development and strategy formulation. More importantly, this study examines the state of narcoterrorism in the Philippines focusing on the Marawi City siege. Finally, this study proposes policy options for the remaining years of the Duterte Administration to counter narcoterrorism in the country based on great lessons learned from global practices and experiences of other countries.
  12. 12. The term narcoterrorism is oftentimes associated with the nexus of drugs and terrorism. It also pertains to the interplay and convergence of narcotics syndicates and terrorist organizations. Despite its common use, it is very lamenting to underscore that there has been no commonly acceptable definition of narcoterrorism. As argued by a scholar specializing on the topic: Narcoterrorism is one of today’s buzzwords in foreign and domestic policy. It should be noted, however, that even though the word is frequently used and serves as the foundation of several policy decisions, its definition is ambiguous and that it has different focus and implications depending on what part of the composite word is emphasized.6 But many experts agreed that former Peruvian President Belaunde Terry originally coined the said term in 1983 to describe terrorist attacks on his counter-narcotics police forces by rebel forces. These rebels belonged to the Sendero Luminoso, more known as the Shining Path, a virulent communist party in Peru.7 Eventually, the term narcoterrorism referred to violent activities of the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) or the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia. Latin American authorities blamed the FARC and the Shining Path for perpetrating terrorism and trafficking of prohibited drugs in the Latin American region.8 In the 1990s, particularly after the end of the cold war, the definition of narcoterrorism expanded to include violent activities of both drug syndicates and rebel groups. At the turn of the 21st century, scholars and experts used the concept of narcoterrorism to grapple with the involvement of terrorist groups in drug trafficking, particularly those associated with Al-Qaeda and ISIS. At present, What is Narcoterrorism? Despiteits common use,itisvery lamentingto underscorethat therehasbeen nocommonly acceptable definitionof narcoterrorism.
  13. 13. 4 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES many scholars and experts use narcoterrorism to describe the complex nexus of drugs and terrorism, although this nexus arguably still lacks conceptual clarity and policy coherence. Because narcoterrorism involves the twin problem of drug trafficking and terrorism, it has acquired a “dual character” that remains to be conceptually problematic because of its ambiguity. Narcoterrorism attempts to merge two problems under a single roof: the war on drugs and the war on terrorism. But the “the merger of the two phenomena” is complicating rather than facilitating, clarification of the two concepts that narcoterrorism attempts to embody.9 There is still a lack of satisfactory explanation on whether narcoterrorism places more emphasis on the drug aspect of terrorism or gives more stress on the terrorist dimension of drug trafficking. Some studies use the term narcoterrorism to describe the collaboration of terrorist groups and drug syndicates.10 Others use narcoterrorism to explain the financing of terrorism from drug money.11 Apparently, narcoterrorism is a highly contested concept. But the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) of the United States defines narcoterrorism as “a subset of terrorism, in which terrorist groups, or associated individuals, participate directly or indirectly in the cultivation, manufacture, transportation, or distribution of controlled substances and the monies derived from these activities.12 Simply put, narcoterrorism pertains to “terrorist/ insurgentorganizationsthatusedrugtraffickingproceedstoadvancetheirpoliticalagenda.”13 From this view, narcoterrorism endorses the war on drugs in the context of the war on terrorism. Thus, combating narcoterrorism is placed under counterterrorism. Institutions responsible for counterterrorism are given the responsibility to combat narcoterrorism. There is another view, however, using narcoterrorism to privilege more the narcotics aspect of terrorism.14 This view pursues counterterrorism in the context of the war on drugs. Thus, institutions responsible for counternarcotics are given the responsibility to combat narcoterrorism.15 But others avoid this dichotomy by advocating for an interagency collaboration to combat narcoterrorism in a holistic manner.16 To counter narcoterrorism, some countries apply a whole-of-government approach by mobilizing the resources of the whole government bureaucracy involved in countering terrorism and illegal use of drugs. Other countries advocate a whole-of-nation approach to include civil societies, non-government organizations, academic communities and policy think tanks in addressing the threat of narcoterrorism.
  14. 14. Despite the lack of conceptual clarity, there is no doubt that narcoterrorism poses serious threats to international peace and security. The threat of narcoterrorism is real rather than imagined. Narcoterrorism is a global threat that severely affects the Philippines. If not swiftly abated, narcoterrorist threats in the Philippines can also unleash adverse impact not only on Filipinos but also on the international community. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recognizes the growing problem of the financing of terrorism from illicit drug profits. The UNODC says that drugs continue to provide revenue for organized crime networks, including terrorism.17 The UNODC also examines different forms of violence associated with drug trafficking and its links to terrorism.18 The UNODC correlates the increased incidents of drug trafficking to increased incidents of terrorist attacks worldwide. In the production of opium poppy in Afghanistan, for example, the UNODC reveals in its 2016 World Drug Report that a 25 percent increase in the number of hectares cultivated also results in 0.15 percent increase of terrorist attacks with 1.43 percent increase in casualties annually.19 The UNODC elaborates: In a number of countries, resources generated by illicit activities such as drug trafficking have played a role in complicating and extending armed conflicts, often increasing their overall lethality. The connection between the illicit drug trade and non- state armed groups has materialized in high-profile examples such as Afghanistan, Colombia, Myanmar and Peru. In Afghanistan, an analysis of the impact of opium production on terrorist attacks and casualties between 1994 and 2008 estimated that a 25 per cent increase in the number of hectares of cultivated opium poppy was associated with an average of 0.15 Narcoterrorism: Global Situation Despite the lack of conceptual clarity, there is no doubt that narcoterrorism poses serious threats to international peace and security. The threat of narcoterrorism is real rather than imagined.
  15. 15. 6 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES more terrorist attacks and 1.43 casualties per year.20 In May 2017, the UNODC updated its data and released its World Drug Report 2017 where a quarter of the billion people were reported to have used illegal drugs. The World Drug Report 2017 devotes one booklet (Booklet 5) to examine the connection of drugs and terrorism. In this booklet, the UNODC reveals that some terrorist groups benefit from illegal drug trades.21 Based on some evidences it gathers from various sources on the ground, the UNODC observes: Some evidence suggests that Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, which operates primarily in North and West Africa, has been involved in cannabis and cocaine trafficking, or at least in protecting traffickers, though the group’s overall income from the drug sector appears to have been rather modest. Individual commanders of the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa, which broke away from Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, seem at present to be directly involved in drug trafficking. In and around the Syrian Arab Republic, seizure data on “captagon” pills — typically amphetamine mixed with caffeine — suggest that a manufacturing hub exists in the area of operations of ISIL, Al-Qaida offshoot Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (formerly known as Al-Nusrah Front) and other armed groups. ISIL and other non-State armed groups have been linked in media reports to the production of “captagon”.22 Despite the observation that that drug trafficking contributes to the financing of terrorism, strong evidences linking some terrorist groups to drug trafficking remain to be thin. There is no doubt that terrorist groups, like the Talibans in Afghanistan, “that aspire to control large amounts of territory need huge financial resources, and have relied on organized crime and the illicit drug trade to fund Despite the observation that that drug trafficking contributes to the financing of terrorism, strong evidences linking some terrorist groups to drug trafficking remain to be thin.
  16. 16. 7MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES their ambitions.”23 But existing evidences are not conclusive to claim terrorist groups as drug traffickers. Available evidences only tell, “Income linked to the drug sector is only one of several revenue streams for terrorist groups. If one revenue stream dries up, another can be tapped, such as extortion, kidnapping for ransom, bank robberies, sale of natural resources or sale of cultural artifacts.”24 Global Trends in Drug Use Source: World Drug Report From other study, the Terrorism Knowledge Base identified 395 terrorist organizations with involvements in various crimes from 1998 to 2005. The Terrorism Knowledge Base discovered that 35 organizations, representing 9 percent, were engaged in drug trafficking.25 This study also found that international terrorist organizations “are more likely to engage in drug trafficking when they have the logistical capability and the necessary network.”26 In the investigative study published in 2002 by the US Department of Defense (DOD)
  17. 17. 8 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES in collaboration with the Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress, several foreign terrorist organizations (FTOs) were identified to be recipients of narcotics funding.27 The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) of the Southern Philippines was included in the investigative study. Thus, the ASG is in the global strategic radar of counter narcoterrorism investigations. Some narcotics funded terrorist organizations examined and mentioned in the study are the following: • Al Qaeda (Afghanistan and Pakistan) • Basque Fatherland and Liberty (Euzkadi Ta Azkatasuna or ETA from Basque, Spain) • FARC (Columbia) • Ga-mat Islamiya (Egypt) • Hamas (Palestine) • Hezbollah (Iran and Lebanon) • Irish Republican Army (IRA) • Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan • Jamat Muslimeen (from Pakistan and Bangladesh) • Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) • Liberation Army of Preševo, Medvedja, and Bujanovac (Serbia) • Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE of Sri Lanka) • National Movement for the Liberation of Kosovo (NMLK) and Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) • National Liberation Army of Albania and Macedonia • Shining Path (Peru) More often than not, international terrorist organizations use drug trafficking routes in their operations. The interregional trafficking flows of methamphetamine, for example, provide routes forterroristgroupstomovearound. InSoutheastAsia,thetrafficking route of methamphetamine coincides with the operational route of terrorist organizations in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand with links to drug syndicates in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam.28 The intersection between major drug trafficking routes and terrorist activities has not been thoroughly studied.
  18. 18. 9MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES The intersection between major drug trafficking routes and terrorist activities has not been thoroughly studied. But the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has already recognized the gravity of this problem as part of non-traditional security challenges, particularly in the context of transnational organized crime.29 As early as 1976, in fact, the Declaration of ASEAN Concord urged for intensified regional cooperation in order to prevent and eradicate drug trafficking and narcotics abuse in Southeast Asia. Drugs, Terrorism and Insurgency Source: World Drug Report 2017 At least five distinct ways have been identified to show the links between drug trafficking and terrorism: 1. Supplying cash for terrorist operations; 2. Creating chaos in countries where drugs are produced, through which they pass, or in which they are sold at retail and consumed — chaos sometimes deliberatelycultivatedbydrugtraffickers—whichmayprovideanenvironment
  19. 19. 10 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES conducive to terrorist activity; 3. Generating corruption in law enforcement, military, and other governmental and civil-society institutions in ways that either build public support for terrorist-linked groups or weaken the capacity of the society to combat terrorist organizations and actions; 4. Providing services also useful for terrorist actions and movements of terrorist personnel and materiel, and supporting a common infrastructure, such as smuggling capabilities, illicit arms acquisition, money laundering, or the production of false identification or other documents, capable of serving both drug-trafficking and terrorist purposes; and, 5. Competing for law enforcement and intelligence attention.30 Methamphetamine Trafficking Routes Being Used by Terrorist Groups Source: UNODC World Drug Report 2017
  20. 20. 11MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES The UNODC’s Terrorism Prevention Branch fully recognizes that narcoterrorism is a global threat requiring “strong coordination and cooperation within national governments and between states and organizations at the regional and international level.”31 The Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), which publishes the annual Global Terrorism Index, affirms that drugs not only fund global terrorism but also induce users to commit acts of lone-wolf terrorism.32 Many recorded terrorist incidents worldwide had connections with drug trafficking. But the Global Terrorism Index 2016 produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace does not specifically use the term narcoterrorism to describe the nexus of drugs and terrorism. Interestingly, the Global Terrorism Index 2016 lists the Philippines as number 12 in the ranking of countries with the most number of terrorist incidents recorded during the year.33 For 2017, the Institute for Economics and Peace released its Global Terrorism Index 2017 in collaboration with the Vision of Humanity (VOH).34 The report continues to rank the Philippines as Number 12 in the list of countries in the world with the highest impact of terrorism.35 Terrorist activities during the year also continued to receive funding from various illicit sources like drug trafficking, arms trafficking, human trafficking, extortions, illegal mining, and money laundering among others. In countries like India and Nigeria, terrorist groups there exhibited the profile of narcoterrorism with the close nexus of drug trafficking and terrorism.36 The Bureau of Counterterrorism and Countering Violent Extremism of the US Department of State, which releases the annual Country Reports on Terrorism, has also documented not only foreign terrorist organizations involved in drug trafficking but also terrorist personalities using drugs for their violent extremist activities.37 In its July 2017 Country Reports on Terrorism, the US Government recognizes the nexus of terrorism and drugs, but it only uses the term narcoterrorism once when it discusses in the report the problem in Peru.38 So, like the Global Terrorism Index of the Institute for Economics and Peace, the Country Reports on Terrorism does not also use narcoterrorism to highlight the Many recorded terrorist incidents worldwide had connections with drug trafficking.
  21. 21. 12 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES intersection of drug trafficking and terrorist activities. Nonetheless, both reports have recognized the global problem of drugs and terrorism requiring international cooperation and national capacity building involving not only state players but also civil society organizations. The Impact of Terrorism Worldwide: The Philippines Ranking Number 12 Source: UNODC World Drug Report 2017
  22. 22. Countering Narcoterrorism: Global Lessons Learned The international community, particularly the United Nations (UN), has proposed various measures to promote international cooperation in combating narcoterrorism. Many affected countries have also implemented their own domestic counter-measures. These counter-measures have produced mixed results and unintended consequences that the Philippinegovernmentneedstotakeintoaccountinpolicydevelopmentandimplementation. LESSONS FROM THE UNITED NATIONS As early as 1961, the UN already took action on global drug trafficking problem when it passed the UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. The 1961 Convention endorsed a law enforcement based approach to confront drug problem plaguing the international community. The 1961 Convention criminalizes drug offenses and calls for a strong punitive action against drug offenders. In 1988, the UN passed another measure called the Convention Against Illicit Traffic in NarcoticDrugsandPsychotropicSubstancesinordertheaddresscriminalviolenceassociated with illegal drug use. The 1988 Convention recognizes “the links between illicit traffic and other related organized criminal activities, which undermine the legitimate economies and threaten the stability, security and sovereignty of States.”39 In 1993, the World Conference on Human Rights reaffirms the connection between drugs and criminal violence, particularly violence resulting from acts of terrorism, when it declares: Theacts,methodsandpracticesofterrorisminallitsformsandmanifestations as well as linkage in some countries to drug trafficking are activities aimed at the destruction of human rights, fundamental freedoms and democracy, threatening territorial integrity, security of States and destabilizing legitimately constituted Governments. The international community should take the necessary steps to enhance cooperation to prevent and combat terrorism.40
  23. 23. 14 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES In 2005, the UN General Assembly raises the alarm during its 49th Session on the growing links between drugs and terrorism. Thus, it issues a declaration that “underlines the concern of the international community at the growing and dangerous links between terrorist groups, drug traffickers, and their paramilitary gangs which have resorted to all types of violence, thus endangering the constitutional order of the States and violating basic human rights.”41 Towards this end, the UN urges the UNODC to promote international cooperation and capacity building to combat the threat of drugs and terrorism. The UNODC has recently developed a framework for action to combat drugs and terrorism within the rubric of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The UNODC asserts that in order to be “sustainable development-sensitive”, efforts to address the world drug problem need the following: • To be in line with the requirements of the international human rights instruments. • To be gender-sensitive, so as to consider the special needs of women and their greater level of stigmatization when designing prevention programs, treatment interventions for drug dependence, as well as the criminal justice response to drug-related offences. • To be environmentally friendly, so as to ensure that the curtailment of the illicit supply chain for drugs does not cause deforestation or other environmental damage. • To ensure that “no one is left behind”, by, for example, considering the special needs of men who have sex with men when targeting the spread of infectious diseases among PWID, and the special needs of migrants, including international as well as internal migrants, who can be particularly vulnerable to drug use. • To overcome the stigmatization of drug users, as this can lead to further marginalization. • Tobebasedonscientificevidence,sothatdrugpolicies can address the core aspects of social development and public health.42 In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 (9/11) terrorist attacks, some countries sustained the war on drugs in the context of the war on terrorism.
  24. 24. 15MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES At the country level, many countries have waged the war on drugs since the US began its vigorous campaign in the 1970s. In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 (9/11) terrorist attacks, some countries sustained the war on drugs in the context of the war on terrorism. Addressing the duo of drugs and terrorism informs the present campaign against narcoterrorism. LESSONS FROM THE UNITED STATES The US provides many lessons learned from its wars on drugs and terrorism. When it first initiated the war on drugs in 1971, the US under the administration of then President Richard Nixon declared drug abuse as “public enemy number one” after discovering the heroin addiction of around 15 percent of US servicemen in Vietnam. Nixon increased federal resources towards the “eradication, interdiction, and incarceration” of drug abusers. In 1973, the US established the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to replace the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs. Because of the growing menace of drug abuse in the US in the 1980s, the US Armed Forces and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) got strongly involved in drug interdiction measures. Since then, the US adopted more punitive approaches to deter drug use and distribution not only in its homeland but also in other countries.43 During the administration of President George H.W. Bush, the US declared his new version on the war on drugs by reducing funding for drug prevention and treatment and increasing instead the federal budget for anti-drug law enforcement by almost 50 percent.44 As a result, many American drug users suffered imprisonment rather than medical treatment as the US government viewed drug menace as a law enforcement problem rather than a public health issue. By 1994, around one million Americans suffered detention each year due to drug offenses. When the US waged the war on terrorism in 2001, the figure increased to 1.5 million Americans being imprisoned each year in the 2008 estimates. The US war on drugs suffered the unintended consequence of racial discrimination as most of those incarcerated belonged to African-American communities. The US war on terror, on the hand, affected many Arab-American communities. The US war on drugs extended overseas. The US deployed the CIA abroad to operate in drug-infested countries affecting the Americans. The US mobilized the military in the global campaign against drugs in the context of Military Operations Other Than War (MOOTW). The US implemented the Operation Just Cause in Panama in 1989, the Plan Columbia in 1998, the Merida Initiative Mexico in 2008, and the Operation Honduras in 2012.
  25. 25. 16 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES But in June 2011, the Global Commission on Drug Policy already declared the US war on drug and terrorism as a failure because it focused more on arrests and incarceration rather than on treatment and rehabilitation.45 Moreover, American taxpayers regarded the war on drugs as too costly, notwithstanding inadequate budgetary support for treatment of drug addicts. From 1970 to 2010, the US government spent $1.5 trillion on the war on drugs. Critics regarded this amount as not commensurate with the drug addiction rate during the said period. The so-called failure on US war on drugs was also attributed to the fact that 50 percent of detained Americans due to drug charges were repeat offenders. As a result, the US government issued a new Drug Policy in May 2012 calling for increased budgetary support for research and development on global drug problems and urging for a rethinking of an anti-drug approach that measured success on the basis of arrests and detentions of offenders. On the war on terror, the US spent around $1.7 trillion from 2001 to 2014 based on the report released by Congressional Research Service (CRS). Because of the involvement on international terrorist groups in illegal drug trade, the US also pursued anti-narcoterrorism campaigns to coordinate its war on drugs and war on terror. There is still a need to examine the US achievements and challenges in its anti-narcoterrorism campaigns. But other countries have already supported the US in its campaign against narcoterrorism as a growing security threat.46 As a long- standing security ally, the United Kingdom has joined the US in its war against narcoterrorism. From 1970 to 2010, the US government spent $1.5 trillion on the war on drugs. Critics regarded this amount as not commensurate with the drug addiction rate during the said period.
  26. 26. 17MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES US Drug Control Spending Vis a Vis US Drug Addiction Rate 1970 - 2010 Source: Matt Groft, The Atlantic, and 12 October 2012 LESSONS FROM UNITED KINGDOM In Europe, the UK has the highest level of illegal drug use.47 From mere 5,000 users in 1975, it grew to 281,000 in 2007. Thus, the UK also vigorously waged a war on drugs. The US greatly influenced the development of anti-illegal drugs policy in the UK. The US pressured the UK to pass the Drug (Regulation of Misuse) Act of 1964 and the Misuse of Drugs Act of 1971. Like the US, the UK pursued strong punitive actions against drug addicts. The UK also spent huge money to support its war on drugs. In 2009 alone, it was estimated that the UK government was spending £16 billion a year in the war on drugs. The UK followed the US model in criminalizing the illegal use of drugs. But the UK avoided the pitfall of the US when London started investing more on treatment programs for offenders by treating them as patients rather than criminals. In 1991, the UK passed a legislation that separated punitive and medical responses to drug misuse. Though this legislation, the UK implemented treatment programs that tremendously reduced the numbers of drug offenders to 48 percent based on a 2008 research report.48 As elaborated by the Global Commission on Drug Policy:
  27. 27. 18 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Research carried out in the UK into the effects of their policy of diversion from custody into treatment programs clearly demonstrated a reduction in offending following treatment intervention. In addition to self-reports, the researchers in this case also referred to police criminal records data. The research shows that the numbers of charges brought against 1,476 drug users in the years before and after entering treatment reduced by 48 percent. In 2009, the UK amended its 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act. This new legislation gives more emphasis on treatment of drug patients rather than punishment of drug offenders. Treatment reduced drug use and the concomitant crimes associated with drug use. Thus, the UK reallocated more resources from incarceration of drug offenders to treatment of drug patients. This exemplary practice from the UK is now being studied by other countries for replication. Because of the growing threats from narcoterrorism, the UK also joined the US in the campaign against this menace. The UK and the US are now pooling their resources together in waging a war against narcoterrorism, particularly in West Africa where the Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) is suspected to be using drug money to finance its terrorist activities in the region.49 There has been no systematic study, however, how the US and the UK are achieving their goals in the fight against narcoterrorism, particularly in terms of reducing illegal drug trade and preventing terrorist attacks. But other major powers, like China, have also takes serious counter measures to address security threats emanating from the growing nexus of drugs and terrorism. LESSONS FROM CHINA China is fighting its own battle against drugs and terrorism. Though China became the world’s famous on drug issues because of the two Opium Wars of the 19th century, China was relatively unaffected by international drug network at the turn of the 20th centuryduetolimitedconsumermarketandstrongrepressiveactions UK avoided the pitfall of the US when London started investing more on treatment programs for offenders by treating them as patients rather than criminals.
  28. 28. 19MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES of the communist government against illegal drug use.50 In the 21st century, however, China has the largest number of illegal drug users in Asia as the consumer market for illegal drugs has widened in the country as a result of growing economic development and greater openness to the outside world. More than a million illegal drug users were recorded in China in 2002.51 But in 2013, the total registered drug addicts reached 2.4 million. To date, China is the largest seizure state of heroin in the world, the 2nd largest of amphetamines, the 7th largest of ecstasy, and the 9th largest of opium.52 Most of its illegal drugs are trafficked into China from the Golden Triangle of Myanmar, Laos and Thailand as well as from the Golden Crescent of Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan and even from the border of North Korea. From China, illegal drugs are trafficked to countries in Southeast Asia, particularly to Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam. Thus, China pursues tough measures to counter illegal drugs. Originally, China had three government offices responsible for countering illegal drugs: the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Public Security, and the Customs General Administration. In 1990, China established the National Narcotics Control Commission to unify government efforts to fight the proliferation of illegal drugs in the country. In 2004, the Chinese government launched the “people’s war”53 againstillegaldrugswithgreaterfocusontheYunnanprovince where the Golden Triangle of Southeast Asia strongly operated.54 Recognizing that China could not defeat fighting illegal drugs alone, it entered into Mutual Legal Assistance Agreement (MLAT) with 24 nations, so far, to combat the criminal aspect of illegal drugs. To address health security issues associated with illegal drug abuse, China also launched treatment and demand reduction programs. Its Public Health Bureaus build rehabilitation centers and special facilities for the re-education of illegal drug users through alternative labor trainings. China has also pursued a more human treatment approach like the construction of Methadone Maintenance Therapy (MMT) clinics. China is also facing the problem of narcoterrorism because of the involvement of some Uyghur militants in drug trafficking to finance the activities of the Eastern Turkestan Islamic Movement To address health security issues associated with illegal drug abuse, China also launched treatment and demand reduction programs.
  29. 29. 20 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES (ETIM), a foreign terrorist organization operating in China, particularly in Xinjiang province. China is using its war on drugs and war on terrorism to curtail security threats emanating from militant activities of some Uyghur groups.55 LESSONS FROM COLUMBIA Columbia became the world’s epicenter of drug trade being the world’s leading producer of cocaine for many decades. Drug money financed armed conflicts in Columbia. Many big international drug cartels originated in Columbia: the Medellin Cartel, the Cali Cartel, Norte del Valle Cartel, and the North Coast Cartel, among others. FARC got its financing from the money of these drug cartels. Drugs also greatly influenced the government and politics of Columbia. It was in Columbia where the idea of narcopolitics evolved, though some scholars said that the idea originally came from West Africa with the establishment of some narco-states. The United States implemented the Plan Columbia to fight drugs and insurgency in the country, specifically the involvement of FARC in drug trade and armed conflicts. The Plan Columbia was a war on drug and was a counter-insurgency campaign at the same time. Its original purpose was to defeat the FARC and its links with drug cartels in Columbia by using both police and military forces. The Plan Columbia also involved development measures ala “Marshall Plan” to rebuild Columbia as a nation from the influence of drugs. TheresultofPlanColumbiawasmix.56 Itcontributedimmensely tosupplyanddemandreductionsofdrugsandwashailedasthe“most successful nation-building project” of the United States. Drug related crime and violence declined to 50 percent. Columbia’s free market economy grew steadily and by 2007, it enjoyed a growth rate of 6.7 percent, one of the highest growth rates in Latin America. In 2015, Columbia saw the increase of new millionaires not from drug money but from legitimate entrepreneurships. But Plan Columbia’s human rights costs were considered massive with internal displacement of around 4 million people and the tragic death of 220,000 persons with 80 percent coming from the civilian population.57 Columbia became the world’s epicenter of drug trade being the world’s leading producer of cocaine for many decades.
  30. 30. 21MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES LESSONS FROM PERU Like Columbia, Peru experienced similar problems of drugs, terrorism, and armed violence. It was in Peru when the idea of narcoterrorism originated. The war on drugs in Peru was also waged in tandem with counter-insurgency, particularly against the Shining Path.58 With the achievements of the intensified US-backed war on drugs in Columbia, the UNODC reported that Peru became the world’s top cocaine producer in 2013 from a 60 percent producer in 1992.59 Mexican, Russian and Columbian drug cartels now operate in Peru. Remnants of the Shining Path continue to have links with illegal drug trade in the country. As a result, the war on drugs in Peru became heavily militarized with the presence of American troops in Peru to fight the menace.60 Achievements in the war on drugs helped improve Peruvian economy with a GDP growth average of around 6 percent for the past 10 years. But the drug trade can undermine its present economic growth if it continues unabated with its current trend. Peru has one of the world’s longest wars on drug and its protracted war on drugs can threaten its economy. As argued by an analyst, “Failing to deal with its drug problem in the long-term will harm Peru’s continued growth and, if its economy suffers a downturn, there is potential for a major spike in violent crime and related activity.”61 LESSONS FROM THAILAND In Southeast Asia, the fiercest battle against drug, thus far, was in Thailand. During the administration of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, Thailand waged a bloody war against drugs that began in February 2003. At that time, 5 percent (or 3 million) of its 63 million citizens were accused of drug addiction, particularly with the use methamphetamines, or ‘crazy pills’ as Thai users would call it. Thaksin pursued an aggressive law enforcement campaign against drug dealers, users, and traffickers. Though Thaksin’s war on drugs highlighted the need to promote public education and awareness against drugs and to treat drug addicts as patients rather than criminals, the actual practice Achievements in the war on drugs helped improve Peruvian economy with a GDP growth average of around 6 percent for the past 10 years.
  31. 31. 22 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES became a killing spree against drug users and dealers. Thaksin ordered “shoot-to-kill” to drug offenders. As result, the first three months of Thaksin’s war on drugs caused the death of 2,800 persons. The huge number of killings in few months prompted the UN Human Rights Committee in 2005 to raise serious concerns about the situation and urged the international community to investigate “extra judicial killings” in Thailand.62 Thaksin’s bloody crackdown on drugs in 2003 created social and political problems in Thailand because investigations showed that 50 percent of those who suffered deaths during the campaign were found to have no links at all with drug trade. There were also allegations that local Thai police officers used Thaksin’s “shoot-to- kill” order to settle old scores. Investigations revealed that list of persons for drug offense were flawed because: Mostnamesaredrawnfromtheresultsofcommunity meetings, which offered an opportunity for officials with conflicts to enter the names of people unrelated to the drug trade. Relatives and friends of those accused are also lumped into the same category. And ethnic minorities were subjected to stereotyped beliefs that they were also involved in the drug trade.63 At present, illegal drug use continues to rise in Thailand. From 2009 to 2014, the drugs cases doubled from 151,000 to about 347,000 while registered drug offenders rose at a similar rate from 168,000 to 366,000.64 Thaksin’s bloody crackdown on drugs in 2003 created social and political problems in Thailand because investigations showed that 50 percent of those who suffered deaths during the campaign were found to have no links at all with drug trade.
  32. 32. The Philippines is not spared from the problem of narcoterrorism. Theproblemofdrugsandthethreatofterrorismposesclearandpresent danger to the well being of the Filipino people. According to Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), 11,321 villages or 26.93 percent of 42,036 villages in the Philippines were severely affected by drug problems. More than 3 million Filipinos were reported to be addicted to illegal drugs in 2015 based on the 2015 Nationwide Survey on the Nature and Extent of Drug Abuse in the Philippines conducted by the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB). In May 2017,PDEAreportedthat4.7millionofFilipinosbecameusersofillegal drugs. This higher figure, PDEA argued, is more reflective of the real situation on the ground. Around 34 percent of crime incidents in the Philippines were attributed to illegal drug use in 2013. Almost 80 percent of all heinous crimes committed in the country were caused by drug addiction. The UNODC reported that the Philippines became one of the key transit pointsandmajordestinationofillegaldrugs,particularlyamphetamines, in Southeast Asia. Illegal drug use not only encourages violent crimes but also fuels terrorisminthePhilippines. Somepersonalitiesassociatedwithterrorist groups like the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) were accused of either being drug addicts or drug dealers. Lawless elements of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and rouge members of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) were also accused of the same involvements in illegal drugs. It will not be surprising if other personalities associated with other armed groups like the Ansar Khilafa Philippines (AKP), the Maute Group, and the Al Khobar Group (AKG) are also involved in illegal drug activities. Conflict-affected areas in Philippines, particularly in Central Mindanao, were also afflicted by drug problems. The International Theproblem ofdrugsand thethreat ofterrorism posesclearand presentdanger tothewellbeing oftheFilipino people. Marawi City Siege and Its Aftermath: Current State of Narcoterrorism in the Philippines
  33. 33. 24 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Alert, a human rights organization, already warned that involvements of some armed groups in illicit drugs in Mindanao could aversely affect the Bangsamoro peace process.65 The International Alert asserts: The illicit drug economy should be regarded as a strategic concern in the peace process between the government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). Left unchecked, the combination of drug-related corruption and violence is likely to have an adverse effect on the governance institutionsofthefutureBangsamoro.Stakeholdersinthepeaceprocesstherefore need to turn their attention to the drug economy and use the implementation of the peace agreement as an opportunity to address the drug problem. Priorities for action include using drug enforcement as a confidence-building measure, insulating the new Bangsamoro police from corruption, providing alternative economic opportunities for poor communities, challenging the sense of impunity among drug criminals, preventing money laundering, and cutting the links between criminals and politicians.66 Drug Affected Villages (Barangays) in the Philippines Source: Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, February 2016
  34. 34. 25MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES In the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), the connivance of terrorist groups and drug syndicates has already been investigated. The ASG’s involvement in drug trafficking has also been studied67 and properly documented.68 Thus, there was a reason why the PNP described the Davao City bombing on 2 September 2016 as an act of narcoterrorism. To combat illegal drugs, the Philippines has existing counter-narcotics institutions: the PDEA, the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB), and the now defunct Anti-Illegal Drugs Group (AIDG) of the PNP. In March 2017, the PNP launched the Drug Enforcement Group (DEG) to replace the AIDG. The Philippine Congress also has the Committee on Dangerous Drugs to oversee the functions of PDEA, DDB and the DEG. The PNP’s anti-illegal drugs campaign plan is called “Double Barrel”. The Lower Barrel is dubbed “Project Tokhang” while the Upper Barrel is called “Project HVT (High Value Target)”. There are five stages for the Project Tokhang: 1. Collection and validation of information 2. Coordination 3. House to house visitation 4. Processing and documentation 5. Monitoring and evaluation Inter-Agency Task Force on Anti-Illegal Drugs Source: Philippine National Police, February 2016.
  35. 35. 26 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES The Project HVT is implemented through inter-agency coordination. Towards this end, the Duterte government created the Inter-Agency Task Force on Anti-Illegal Drugs to uphold the “Whole-of-Nation Approach”. A special fund was also allocated to support the activities of the task force. During its first 100 days in office covering the period 30 June to 7 October 2016, the Duterte Administration reported to have conducted 7,928 anti-illegal drugs operations with 8,428 persons arrested , 7,002 cases filed in court and a P8.21 billion worth of seized illegal drugs. The government also dismantled several clandestine laboratories and chemical warehouses being used for the manufacture of illegal drugs. It also arrested 538 high value targets during the first 100 days in office of President Duterte. Source: PDEA, 2016
  36. 36. 27MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Source: PDEA, 2016 Source: PDEA, 2016
  37. 37. 28 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES But waging the war on drugs a year after, the Duterte Administration suffered tremendous set-back when ISIS followers in Mindanao attempted to take over Marawi City in order to establish a wilaya or a province of the Islamic State in the Southern Philippines.69 The Philippine government disclosed that drug money financed the Marawi City siege.70 President Duterte himself asserted that money from illegal drugs funded terrorist activities in Mindanao.71 InhisreporttothePhilippineCongresstojustifythedeclaration of Martial Law in Mindanao, President Duterte argued that “foreign- based terrorist groups, the ISIS in particular, as well as illegal drug money, provide financial and logistical support to the Maute group.”72 In his speech at the 119th Anniversary of the Philippine Navy in Davao City, President Duterte disclosed, “there was a time and until now that the terrorism activities in the Philippines is funded and fueled by drug money.”73 The Philippine government claimed that drug money significantly contributed to the financing of the Marawi City siege. Then Presidential Spokesperson, Secretary Ernesto Abella, affirmed this when he disclosed that “Local politicians in Mindanao adversely affected by the government’s campaign against illegal drugs have financed the Daesh-inspired Maute Group, whose attempt to undermine our sovereignty resulted in the rebellion in Marawi.”74 President Duterte even openly identified at least 44 local drug lords who provided financial support to armed groups that carried out the Marawi City Siege.75 These drug lords belonged to a network that President Duterte described in his so-called as LDS (Lanao del Sur) Drug Trade Link Diagram. President Duterte elaborated the problem of narcoterrorism in the Philippines when he presented on 22 September 2017 to the Davao City media the LDS Drug Trade Link Diagram. In the Diagram, President Duterte revealed that drug lords operating in Lanao Del Sur provided funds to the Maute Group to carry out the Marawi City siege. Drug lords that President Duterte identified were the following: • A Filipino Chinese businessman whose daughter is married to Johary Abinal (ex-husband of Johaira “Marimar” Abinal) • FM Muslimen Macabatok But waging the war on drugs a year after, the Duterte Administration suffered tremendous set-back when ISIS followers in Mindanao attempted to take over Marawi City in order to establish a wilaya or a province of the Islamic State (IS) in the Southern Philippines. President Duterte revealed that drug lords operating in Lanao Del Sur provided funds to the Maute Group to carry out the Marawi City siege.
  38. 38. 29MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES • Mayor Noron Dadayan (Buadiposo Buntong) • Mayor Hadji Jamal Abdulsalam (Mulondo) • Bonbola Radiamoda (Bayang, Lanao del Sur) • Ansari Saripada Radiamoda (Lilod, Madava, Marawi City) • Vice Mayor Noridin Adiong (Ditsaan, Ramain) • Rangaig Mamarinta (Provincial Board Member, 1st District, Lanao del Sur) • Parahiman Batawi Ronda (Samer, Butig) • Acong Domato and Haj Taha Abdullah (Barangay Baropit, Picong) • Gona Romoros Aba Saguiran (Barangay Bubong, Saguiran, Novaliches, Quezon City)76 Though the list of personalities above could be challenged legally, President Duterte asserted that the diagram was a result of intelligence work.77 Aside from the aforementioned list, President Duterte also named 19 drug dealers known to be town and village officials. The diagram also revealed: All drug trade in LDS pass to former mayor Pre and Solitario [through] barangay chairman Aliodin, and Vice Mayor Arafat and brother[s] Samer and Walid, respectively… Pre and Solitario authored the kidnapping and liquidation of all drug lords… Arrows indicate drug trade control relationship.78 Philippine National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana also affirmed the problem of narcoterrorism in the Philippines when he exclaimed, “The proceeds of the narcotics are being used for these terroristic activities.”79 During the ASEAN Defense Ministerial Meeting (ADMM) in Clark Field, Pampanga in September 2017, Secretary Lorenzana highlighted the problem of drugs and terrorism needing strong regional cooperation to counter them.80 Contrary to the public knowledge of the incident, the Marawi City siege was not only an act of narcoterrorism. It was also the result of various criminal acts associated with transnational Contraryto thepublic knowledgeof theincident, theMarawiCity Siegewasnot onlyanactof narcoterrorism. Itwasalsothe resultofvarious criminalacts associatedwith transnational organized crimes..
  39. 39. 30 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES LDS Drug Trade Linked Diagram Source: President Rodrigo R Duterte, 22 September 2017
  40. 40. 31MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES crimes.81 The Siege occurred not only because of the collective actions of most of the ISIS followers in the Philippines but also because of the collective support of various criminal syndicates engaged in drug trafficking, human smuggling, money laundering, and trafficking of small arms and light weapons in the tri-border maritime areas of the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia, particularly in the Sulu and Celebes/Sulawesi seas. Transnational organized crimes provided the resilient support network of ISIS followers in the Philippines to mount the Marawi City siege. ISIS followers in the Philippines belong to another network in the country called ISIS Philippines (ISISP) declared by the US State Department as a foreign terrorist organization on 27 February 2018.82 ISISP belongs to a unified organization called Daula Islamiya Wilayatul Mashriq (DIWM), the so-called Islamic State Province in East Asia. Based on the Tactical Interrogation Report of TJ Macabalang (one of the arrested suspects in the Davao City bombing in September 2016), the organizational structure of the group is shown in figure below. The overall Leader/Khalifa of DIWM or Daula Islamiya (DI) for short was Isnilon Hapilon with the following sub groups in the different provinces in Mindanao; • Sulu; Basilan; (with unidentified leaders); • Lanao under Abdullah Maute; • Cotabato City under TJ Macabalang; • Sarangani under Commander Tokboy of Ansar Khalifa Philippines (AKP); and, • Daula Islamiya Maguindanao under Abu Turaipe who also founded a group called Jamaatul Mujaheed Wal Ansar (JMWA) Farhana Maute and Cayamura Maute (parents of Maute brothers) served the finance and logistics officers. Mohammad Khayam Maute served as Intelligence and Operation Officer. Followers also called the DIWM as Islamic State Philippines (ISP) in their various messages in the Telegram. The DIWM or ISP had the following sub-leaders based on the confession of TJ Macabalang: • Abdul Azis Maute @MADIE, brother; • Owayda/Humam Abdul Najid, founder of Khilafa Islamiyah Mindanao (K.I.M.) leader; • Abdulrahman Maute @DAMAM/DAMDIE, brother; • Ali Amintao @WHITE LAWAAN, former brigade Commander of MILF; • @AFGHAN (TNU), former MILF sub-leader;
  41. 41. 32 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES • @ABU SUMPA; former MILF sub-leader; • Azzam Ampatua Taher @AZZAM; • @ABU YAMAN/MARIPAGA, Imam of the group; and • Fakhrudin Dilangalin @Abu Said, former leader of Cotabato based DI LDS Drug Trade Linked Diagram Source: Military Intelligence, March 2018 Because of the strong involvement of the entire Maute family in the establishment of DIWM, the Philippine government inaccurately described the mastermind of Marawi City siege as the Maute Group. In various reports, the Philippine government even described the armed group responsible for the Marawi City siege as ISIS-Maute Group. But the official name of the Maute Group was Daula Islamiya Fi Ranao (DIFR) or the Islamic State of Lanao declared in September 2014 when the Maute Family pledged allegiance to ISIS. Because of the participation of the entire Maute Family in the creation of the DIFR, it signaled the rise of family terrorism in the Philippines.83
  42. 42. 33MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES The DIFR served an integral part of the DIWM, which was composed of 23 groups in the Philippines that pledged allegiance to ISIS. The ISIS Central, also known as Daesh, calls all followers of the DIWM as the Soldiers of the Caliphate in East Asia. These Soldiers of the Caliphate have established support network from criminal organizations in Asia and other restive regions involved in money laundering and trafficking of arms, humans and illegal drugs. Theofficialname oftheMaute Groupwas DaulaIslamiya FiRanao(DIFR) ortheIslamic StateofLanao. Maute Group: Rise of Family Terrorism in the Philippines Source: Rommel C Banlaoi, “Maute Group and the Rise of Family Terrorism”, Rappler, 15 June 2017.
  43. 43. 34 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Armed Groups in Southeast Asia that Pledged Allegiance to the ISIS Source: International Center for Political Violence and Terrorism Research, November 2017 In the 10th issue of Rumiya, the official magazine of ISIS, the cover story was Jihad in East Asia, referring to the Marawi City siege. This issue featured an interview with Isnilon Hapilon described as the Amir of the Soldiers of the Khilafa in East Asia.84 In the interview, the Rumiya magazine hailed Hapilon as Shaykh Abu Abdillah Al-Mujahir who described President Duterte as head of “taghut” (anyone who is worshiped instead of Allah) of the Philippines. In the same interview, Hapilon declared the Armed Forces of the Philippines as “Crusader Filipino Army.” Hapilon also conveyed his “message to the world” that a Islamic state “has been established” in East Asia with the siege of Marawi City under his leadership.85 But the military killed Hapilon on 16 October 2017 in a special operation in Marawi City. Prior to his death, the magazine published several photos of Hapilon and his men while the Marawi City siege was still going on. These photos indicated that Hapilon and his men were directly in touch with ISIS Central, which provided operational instructions and tactical orders to Hapilon. ISIS Central, on one hand, received photos and video footages of Marawi City siege used by ISIS in its several propaganda materials during the entire duration of the siege. Through these photos and video footages, ISIS was able to produce several
  44. 44. 35MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES documentary films describing the Philippines as the “new land of jihad” and asking jihadists worldwide to make “hijra to Marawi.”86 This was the reason why several foreign fighters from the Arab world, Asia and Africa joined the Marawi City siege.87 Some hostages rescued by the military confirmed the presence of foreign fighters in Marawi City. Even the Philippine military validated some reports of foreign fighters during the siege.88 Interestingly, the 10th issue of Rumiya used theattackonResortsWorldManilaon2June2017 as its cover photo. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack, though the Philippine government vehemently denied any ISIS involvement in the incident, which the Philippine police declared as a mere robbery with arson. But the ISIS-run Amaq News Agency insisted that their soldiers of Caliphate in Manila planned the attack.89 ISIS conversations in the Telegram stated that the attack was carried out by ISIS lone wolf attacker, Jessie Carlos Javier, whom they described as Khair (Khair al Luzoni).90 The Philippine police continued to rule out terrorism in the Resorts World Manila attack.91 10th Issue of Rumiya Featuring Marawi City Siege Source: Rumiya at https:// qb5cc3pam3y2ad0tm1z xuhho-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/ uploads/2017/08/Rumiyah-ISIS-magazine-10-issue. pd Hapilon and His Men During the Marawi City Siege Source: Rumiya at https:// qb5cc3pam3y2ad0tm1zx uhho-wpengine.netdna- ssl.com/wp-content/ uploads/2017/08/ Rumiyah-ISIS-magazine- 10-issue.pdf
  45. 45. 36 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Meanwhile, ISIS Central regarded the Resorts World Manila attack and the Marawi City siege as part of its worldwide plan to carry out several jihadist attacks during the month of Ramadan in 2017. From its several claimed attacks from 26 May to 25 June 2017, ISIS listed two major attacks in the Philippines: the Marawi City siege and the Resort World Manila attack. ISIS-Claimed Attacks During the Ramadan of 2017 Source: Site Intelligence, June 2017
  46. 46. 37MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES How could ISIS stage those attacks worldwide? Apparently, ISIS was a well-funded terrorist organization. The Washington Institute described ISIS as the world’s best funded terrorist group that was richer than some small countries.92 ISIS got its funds from extortion, robberies, smuggling, counterfeiting and racketeering. One of the major sources of its fund was drug trafficking. The RAND Corporation emphasized that ISIS was so desperate to fund its terrorist activities that it resorted to illegal drug trade to sustain itself.93 Thus, ISIS was involved in narcoterrorism that even reached their Philippines followers who staged the Marawi City siege. Despite the official acknowledgement of narcoterrorist threat in Mindanao posed by the DIWM, the Philippine government, unfortunately, has not yet released a single document to articulate a national strategy to counter narcoterrorism in the country. Though the Philippine government has the National Security Policy 2017- 2022 and the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022 containing discussionsontheproblemsofdrugsandterrorisminthePhilippines, the government has not yet formulated a coherent strategy on how to counter the threat of narcoterrorism in the Philippines that integrates the war on drugs and the war on terrorism. The Drugs Enforcement Group of the PNP has formulated a National Drug Control Strategy that pursues demand reduction, supplyreduction,alternativedevelopment,regionalandinternational cooperation, and civic awareness and response. But this strategy remains to be detached from the country’s national strategy against terrorism that ambiguously advances the concept of PEACE (Protect, Enforce, Advocate, Collaborate, Exercise). Based on the so-called PEACE strategy, the ATC implements four core programs: 1) National Terrorism Prevention; 2) Capacity-Building; 3) Legal and International Affairs; and, 4) Operational Readiness Assessment and Compliance Monitoring. In its National Security Strategy (NSS) 2018, the Duterte Administration underscores the need to vigorously fight drugs and terrorism as a result of the country’s bitter experience in the Marawi City siege.94 ISISwasawell- fundedterrorist organization. TheWashington Institute describedISIS astheworld’s bestfunded terroristgroup thatwasricher thansomesmall countries. Despitethe officialacknowl- edgementof narcoterrorist threatinMind- anaoposedby theDIWM,the Philippinegov- ernment,unfor- tunately,hasnot yetreleaseda singledocument toarticulatea nationalstrat- egytocounter narcoterrorism inthecountry.
  47. 47. 38 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES National Drug Control Strategy Source: Drug Enforcement Group, Philippine National Police, and March 2018 National Anti-Terrorism Strategy Source: Anti-Terrorism Council, Program Management Center, December 2017
  48. 48. 39MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES But the NSS still has no coherent discussion on how to harmonize the war on drugs and the war on terrorism in order to develop a more credible national strategy to counter narcoterrorism in the Philippines. In fact, the war on terror even took the backseat momentarily as Duterte focused on the war on drugs.95 In the aftermath of the Marawi City siege, there is a strong realization that waging the war on drugs and the war on terrorism should go in tandem. This calls for the development of a strong national strategy against narcoterrorism in the Philippines. Programs of the Anti-Terrorism Council Source: Anti-Terrorism Council, Program Management Center, December 2017 Intheaftermath oftheMarawiCity siege,thereisa strongrealization thatwagingthe warondrugs andthewaron terrorismshould gointandem. Thiscallsforthe developmentof astrongnational strategyagainst narcoterrorismin thePhilippines.
  49. 49. Countering Narcoterrorism: Policy Options & Alternatives for the Duterte Government and Beyond A year after the Marawi City siege, there is no doubt that combating drugs and terrorism has been the flagship program of the Duterte government. Despite strong criticisms against Duterte’s war on drugs due to allegations of human rights violations and extra-judicial killings, the Third Quarter 2017 Pulse Asia Survey showed that 88% of Filipinos supported Duterte’s war on drugs. The September 2017 Pew Research Center survey, on the other hand, said that 78% of Filipinos supported Duterte’s handling of illegal drugs issue while 62% of Filipinos said that the Philippine government was making progress in its anti-drugs campaign.96 However, the Duterte government’s accomplishments on the war on drugs have not been effectively synchronized with its war on terrorism. In countering narcoterrorism, there is still the lack of operational clarity on whether it is pursued under the war on drugs or under the war on terrorism. In the war on drugs, the PDEA is the lead government agency in charge of implementing the Philippine government’s campaign against illegal drugs as directed by President Duterte on 10 October 2017. The President also issued Memorandum Order Number 17 on 5 December 2017 directing the PNP, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the Bureau of Customs (BOC), and the Philippine Postal Corporation (PCC) “to resume in providing active support to the PDEA in the conduct of anti-illegal drug operations.” This Order supplements the Executive Order Number 15 issued on 6 March 2017 creating the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) and National Anti-Illegal Drug Task Force (NAID-TF) “to harness the entire bureaucracy to assist in the implementation of anti-illegal drugs campaign.” Despite this arrangement, the Duterte government has not yet clarified on how to counter narcoterrorism in the context of its war on drugs. Apparently, the war on drugs only pays attention to the narcotics aspects of narcoterrorism. It is presumed that the terrorism aspect of narcoterrorism is waged under the government’s war on terrorism led by the Anti-Terrorism Council (ATC) as the highest policy-making body in the area of counter-terrorism.
  50. 50. 42 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Accomplishments on the War on Drugs Source: Presidential Communications Operations Office, The Duterte Administration Year-End Report: 2017 Key Accomplishments (Manila: Malacanang Palace, December 2017). There is, however, a need to understand that drug trafficking organizations and terrorist groups operate differently despite their increasing collaboration. This presents tremendous challenge for counter measures. Legally,organizationsaccusedofdrugtraffickingandgroupsaccusedofactsofterrorism are tried differently under existing Philippine laws. The Philippines does not have a law to convict groups or individuals for specifically the specific act of narcoterrorism. These groups or individuals are either charged of violating illegal drugs laws or anti-terrorism laws. Even for acts of terrorism, law enforcement authorities avoid using anti-terrorism laws for suspects. Philippine law enforcement authorities prefer to use the revised penal code to convict persons for acts of terrorism because they find the Human Security Act (HSA) of 2007, the Philippines’ anti-terrorism law, as difficult to implement due to many human rights provisions. Thus, there is a move to amend or scrap the HSA to replace it with a tougher anti- terrorism law. There is also a proposal to enact another anti-terrorism law that is more useful for law enforcement in order to balance the human rights provisions of the HSA.
  51. 51. 43MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Given the aforementioned global lessons learned in combating narcoterrorism and the current state of narcoterrorism in the Philippines, what are the policy options and alternatives for the Duterte government and beyond? For purposes of law enforcement, the Philippine government can counter narcoterrorism by strengthening Philippine laws on the financing of terrorism. In the Philippine case, terrorist groups venture into illegal drugs operations to finance acts of terrorism. Thus, it is in the area of countering the financing of terrorism that the Philippine government can combat narcoterrorism. If groups and individuals engage both in illegal drug operations and acts of terrorism, the Philippine government can use applicable Philippine laws. But available Philippine laws do not provide strong penalties against narcoterrorism. The Philippine government can enact a new anti-terrorism law that can encompass narcoterrorism and the financing of terrorism. For several decades, however, fighting terrorism and drugs has largely been entrusted to law enforcement authorities. Many governments, particularly in Europe and the Americas, have encouraged strong international police cooperation in order to counter the menace of terrorism and drugs.97 International policing is “often invoked as the inevitable answer to global threats such as terrorism and drug trafficking.”98 But there is a growing agreement among scholars, experts and practitioners that to address the threat of narcoterrorism, there is the strong imperative to transcend the law enforcement-heavy approach. There is the urgency to adopt a more proactive measure that privileges prevention and rehabilitation against narcoterrorism. In2016,theTransformDrugPolicyFoundation,anindependent international charitable organization, published the second edition of The Alternative World Drug Report.99 This Report laments that for the past 50 years, the approach adopted by many countries to fight illegal drugs has not been changed. The dominant approach against illegal drugs has been law enforcement heavy that is “predicated upon policy and military enforcement against producers, suppliers and users – a war on drugs in popular discourse.”100 Butthereis agrowing agreement amongscholars, expertsand practitioners thattoaddress thethreatof narcoterrorism, thereis thestrong imperative totranscend thelaw enforcement- heavyapproach. Thereisthe urgencytoadopt amoreproactive measurethat privileges preventionand rehabilitation against narcoterrorism.
  52. 52. 44 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES While law enforcement is important to address the criminal aspects and implications of illegal drug use, there is now “a growing demand for a more balanced and comprehensive evaluation of the wider impacts of current drug law enforcement strategies, and also for evidence-based exploration of possible alternative approaches.”101 From this Report, the Duterte government may consider the following options and alternatives in the war on drugs: • Fighting the war on drugs with increased ferocity – through increasing the level of resources for enforcement and handing down harsher punishments – with the aim of significantly reducing or eliminating drug use; • Incremental reforms to enforcement and public health and treatment interventions (within the existing prohibitionist legal framework) to improve policy outcomes. Adequate investment in evidence-based prevention, treatment and harm reduction should form a key pillar of drug policy under any legal framework. However, current enforcement approaches can undermine, rather than support, effective health interventions. Reforms to enforcement practices can also target some of the most harmful elements of the criminal market to reduce key crime costs, such as violence, from their current levels; • A reorientation to a health-based approach and decriminalization of personal possession and use (civil or administrative sanctions only). Evidence suggests that if implemented intelligently, as part of a wider health reorientation, decriminalization can deliver criminal justice savings, and positive outcomes on a range of health indicators, without increasing drug use; and, • The legal regulation of drug markets offers the potential to dramatically reduce the costs associated with the illegal trade outlined in this report, but requires negotiating the obstacle of the inflexible UN drug conventions, and managing the risks of over-commercialization. Drawing on experiences from alcohol, tobacco and pharmaceutical regulation, increasingly sophisticated models have now Basedon important experiencesof somecountries, thosethat privilegethe hardapproach (warondrugs, crackdown againstdrug addicts,drug- freesociety) haveledtothe unnecessary criminalization, marginalization and stigmatization ofpeopleusing drugsbutnot harmingothers.
  53. 53. 45MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES been proposed for regulating different aspects of the market – such as production, vendors, outlets, marketing and promotion, and availability – for a range of products in different environments.102 Based on important experiences of some countries, those that privilege the hard approach (war on drugs, crackdown against drug addicts, drug-free society) have led to the unnecessary criminalization, marginalization and stigmatization of people using drugs but not harming others. This kind of approach, unfortunately, has enormously failed worldwide based on scientific studies made by global experts. According to the Global Commission on Drug Policy, “The global war on drugs has failed, with devastating consequences for individuals and societies around the world.”103 It argues, “Vast expenditures on criminalization and repressive measures directed at producers, traffickers and consumers of illegal drugs have clearly failed to effectively curtail supply or consumption.”104 While some drug addicts are indeed engaged in crimes and terrorism, not all users are criminals and terrorists. In most countries, using illegal drugs is a crime. But not all users are criminals. Illegal drug users engaged in violent crimes and terrorism should be given punitive law enforcement actions (hard approach). But illegal users who are not harming others must be treated as patients needing careful medical attention (soft approach). These users must receive appropriate health and treatment services and not punitive and law enforcement actions. Treating illegal drug users as patients rather than criminals is considered a more humane and effective approach to address the problem of illegal drug use. China, the Netherlands, Portugal, Switzerland, and UK provide exemplary practices on how to address illegal drug problem through public health interventions by creating more treatment facilities and rehabilitation centers for illegal drug users. But illegal drug users involved in crimes and terrorism must receive the full force of the law. Findings from solid scientific studies of experts indicate that countries that have pursued harsh actions against drug addicts, dealers, and traffickers and have implemented massive arrest and detention of drug offenders have continued to suffer higher levels of illegal drug use and its concomitant social problems than countries that have adopted a more tolerant, humane and softer actions.105 While the hard approach is undoubtedly essential to fight violence and terrorism associated with illegal drug use, the Duterte government should diligently isolate users who are not harming others. These users need a soft approach that requires treatment, rehabilitation and care.
  54. 54. 46 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES In the fight against terrorism, many experts in the field have also recommended terrorist rehabilitation. Usually implemented in prison, terrorist rehabilitation puts individuals in a therapy session that involves other related “cleansing” processes of trust building, psychological counseling, religious dialogue, community involvement, and after care programs such as family support and post-rehabilitation employment. Existing literature indicates that terrorist rehabilitation is an essential program for another process of counter-terrorism called deradicalization.106 There is a tendency to define deradicalization as a reverse process of radicalization, which is broadly understood as “the process of adopting an extremist belief system, including the willingness to use, support, or facilitate violence, as a method to effect societal change.”107 With this definition of radicalization, deradicalization is defined, on the other hand, as “the process of abandoning an extremist worldview and concluding that it is not acceptable to use violence to effect social change.”108 In other words, deradicalization is a process that aims to remove the ideological sources of violent extremism. Thus, this process is also associated with preventing violent extremism (PVE) and countering violent extremism (CVE). Deradicalization, PVE and CVE are all interrelated processes that intend to lead an individual or group to change extreme ideas and attitudes about violence- particularly about the use of violence against civilians.109 While deradicalization appears to be focusing more on the ideological approach, it also pays attention to behavioral approach. Ideological deradicalization results from a change in belief while behavioralderadicalizationemphasizesachangeinattitude,behavior and action.110 Deradicalization is not synonymous with counter- radicalization, which attempts “to dissuade individuals at risk of radicalization – usually young people.”111 Deradicalization aims to convince already radical individuals to abandon their radical beliefs and leave the use of violence behind. Counter-radicalization aims to prevent individuals from exposure to radical ideas that glorify acts of violence. Whilethehard approachis undoubtedly essentialto fightviolence andterrorism associatedwith illegaldruguse, theDuterte government should diligently isolateusers whoarenot harming others. These usersneeda softapproach thatrequires treatment, rehabilitation andcare.
  55. 55. 47MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES Finally, deradicalization is sometimes being confused with the concept of disengagement. If deradicalization entails the abandonment of radical ideas that endorse violence, disengagement refers to decision of individuals to leave the use of violence behind or to get out of groups or movements engaged in violent acts. While deradicalization may lead to disengagement, disengagement does not necessarily lead to deradicalization. Individuals could be described as disengaged, but could not be automatically regarded as de-radicalized.112 There are disengaged individuals who retain their radical ideas while opting to traverse the path of peace. Deradicalization has been regarded as an important soft approach to counter terrorist threats.113 This is based on the premise that military and police approaches cannot completely defeat terrorism, particularly if threats are emanating from Islamist extremist. In order to defeat terrorism from its roots, there has been a call “to go beyond security and intelligence measures, taking proactive measures to prevent vulnerable individuals from radicalizing and rehabilitating those who have already embraced extremism.”114 This soft proactive measure of deradicalization has been implemented in Algeria, Egypt, Indonesia, Jordan, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Tajikistan, United Kingdom, and Yemen, among others. The Philippines can learn a lot of great lessons from the exemplary practices of these countries.115 In other words, countering narcoterrorism requires the harmonious implementation of the war on drugs and the war on terrorism, which cannot be completely defeated through usual military and police measures. While law enforcement is indeed very important in countering the violent and criminal aspects of narcoterrorism, addressing this threat also needs measures beyond the coercive power of the state. These measures include more humane soft approaches to balance the morecoercivehardapproaches. Aspreviouslystressed,rehabilitation of illegal drug users and terrorists can offer socially acceptable alternatives and more humane ways to counter narcoterrorism. Inorderto defeatterrorism fromitsroots, therehasbeen acall“togo beyondsecurity andintelligence measures, takingproactive measures toprevent vulnerable individualsfrom radicalizingand rehabilitating thosewho havealready embraced extremism.
  56. 56. Conclusion Illegal drug use is a global menace. Its nexus with terrorism further exacerbates the problem it causes to citizens of the world. Narcoterrorism has become a security problem that if not quickly abated can undermine world peace and stability. Thus, many countries have adopted various measures to counter the virulent threat of narcoterrorism. The Philippines is not spared from narcoterrorism. President Duterte has recognized the gravity of this problem. From a war on drugs, the Duterte government has launched a war against drugs and terrorism. The Marawi City siege provided the current government a strong justification to pursue this two-pronged war. A war against narcoterrorism undeniably warrants a hard approach that needs strong law enforcement actions. But not all users are engaged in crime and terrorism. This type of users needs a soft approach that privileges humane treatment, rehabilitation and care. Based on the aforementioned global lessons learned and solid scientific findings of experts, the Duterte government and his successor must adopt a more humane strategy against terrorism and illegal drugs that applies both hard and soft approaches. In the fight againstillegaldrugs,TheAlternativeWorldDrugReportofferspolicyoptionsandalternatives that the Duterte government should seriously consider. In the fight against terrorism, the Duterte government and his successor can also pay serious attention to preventing violent extremism through the process of deradicalization, counter-radicalization, disengagement, and terrorist rehabilitation. The Philippine government can legislate the adoption of this approach to ensure national budgetary allocation. Countering narcoterrorism is not a job for the slothful. The government needs a deeper understanding of this threat in order to muster a strong political will to counter it. Sadly, policy makers are slow to appreciate and too incremental to act on the threat posed by the rapid transformation of groups and individuals operating in the complex nexus of crimes and terrorism where narcoterrorism finds itself. Unless the government learns how to innovate faster and smarter in its policy and actions, threat groups involved in narcoterrorism will evolve into more perilous forms that will be harder to defeat.
  57. 57. *Original version of this study was originally submitted to the then Director of the now defunct Anti- Illegal Drugs Group (AIDG) of the Philippine National Police in September 2016. It has been updated to cover the most current developments. An abridged version of this study has appeared in Rommel C. Banlaoi, “Threats of Narcoterrorism in the Philippines,” Rappler, 23 September 2017. INTRODUCTION TERRORISM, DRUGS, AND THE SIEGE OF MARAWI CITY 1. President Rodrigo R. Duterte, Inaugural Speech on 30 June 2016. 2. President Rodrigo R. Duterte, Speech delivered at the ASEAN Convention Center, Fontana, Clark, Pampanga, 7 December 2017. 3. For an initial analysis, see Rommel C. Banlaoi, “Duterte’s Challenges: Terror, Crime and the Abu Sayyaf,” Rappler, 13 May 2016. 4. Also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The Arabs call it Daesh, an Arabic acronym for “al-Dawla al-Islamiya fil Iraq wa al- Sham”, known to its members as the Islamic State (IS) or the Islamic Caliphate. 5. Office of the President, 2017-2022 National Security Policy for Change and Well-Being of the Filipino People (Manila: Malacanang Palace, 2017). WHAT IS NARCOTERRORISM? 6. Emma Bjornehed, “Narcoterrorism: The Merger of the War on Drugs and the War on Terror,” Global Crime, Volume 6, Numbers 3-4 (August-November 2004), p. 306. 7. Rachel Ehrenfeld, Narcoterrorism. New York: Basic Book, 1990. 8. Libby Goodell, “Narcoterrorism: The Growing Threat in Latin America”, Winter 2014 <https://repository.wlu.edu/bitstream/ handle/11021/27299/RG38_Goodell_LACS_2014. pdf?sequence=1>. 9. Emma Björnehed, “Narco-Terrorism: The Merger of the War on Drugs and the War on Terror”, Global Crime, Volume 6, Number 3&4 (August-November 2004), pp. 306-308. 10. Christine Myers, Insurgency, Terrorism and Drug Trade (Herzliya: International Institute for Counter-Terrorism, 31 October 2013). Also see Sara A. Carter, “Terrorists Teaming with Drug Cartels,” The Washington Times (8 August 2007). 11. Rex A. Hudson, Laverle Berry, Glenn E. Curtis, Rex A. Hudson and Nina A. Kollars, A Global Overview of Narcotics-Funded Terrorist and Other Extremist Groups (A Report Prepared by the Federal Research Division, Library of Congress under an Interagency Agreement with the Department of Defense, May 2002). 12. Cited in Benoit Gomis, “Demystifying Narcoterrorism”, Policy Brief, Number 9 (Global Drug Policy Observatory, May 2015). 13. Brian Dodd, “The Nexus Between Drugs and Terrorism” (A PowerPoint presentation, 2010), < http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/2010homeland/Dodd. pdf>. 14. Vanda Felbab-Brown, “A Better Strategy Against Narcoterrorism” (MIT Center for International Studies, January 2006). 15. Jonas Hartelus, “Narcoterrorism” (Policy Paper for the East West Institute and the Swedish Carnegie Institute, February 2008). 16. See for example the work of Joint Counter- Narcoterrorism Task Force of the State of Arizona, United States <https://dema.az.gov/joint-task- force-arizona/joint-counter-narcotics-task-force>. Notes
  58. 58. 52 MARAWI CITY SIEGE AND THE THREATS OF NARCOTERRORISM IN THE PHILIPPINES NARCOTERRORISM: GLOBAL SITUATION 17. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes, World Drug Report 2017, Booklet 2 - Global Overview of Drug Demand and Supply: Latest Trends, Cross- Cutting Issues (Vienna: UNODC Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, May 2017), p. 4. 18. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes, World Drug Report 2016 (Vienna: UNODC Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, May 2016), p. 63. 19. Ibid., p. 97. 20. Ibid. 21. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes, World Drug Report 2017: Booklet 5, The Drug Problem and Organized Crime, Illicit Financial Flow, Corruption and Terrorism (Vienna: UNODC Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, May 2017), pp. 10-11. 22. Ibid. p. 35. 23. Ibid., p. 11. 24. Ibid., p. 40. 25. Cited in V. Asal, H. Brinton Milward and Eric W. Schoon, “When terrorists go bad: analyzing terrorist organizations’ involvement in drug smuggling”, International Studies Quarterly, Volume 59, Number 1 (2015), pp. 112-123. 26. Ibid. 27. Rex A. Hudson, Laverle Berry, Glenn E. Curtis, Rex A. Hudson and Nina A. Kollars, A Global Overview of Narcotics-Funded Terrorist and Other Extremist Groups (A Report Prepared by the Federal Research Division, Library of Congress under an Interagency Agreement with the Department of Defense, May 2002). 28. For additional discussions, see United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, “Drug trafficking trends & border management in South-East Asia: Responding to an evolving context of regional integration” (CNN Intercessional: Interactive Lunch time discussion, Vienna, 19 November 2014) <https://www.unodc.org/documents/ ungass2016/CND_Preparations/Brown_bag_ lunch/Asia/2014.11.19_CND_preparation_for_ UNGASS_2016_final.pdf> 29. Mely Caballero-Anthony and Alistair D.B. Cook, eds., Non-Traditional Security in Asia: Issues, Challenges and Framework for Action (Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2013). Also see Andrew T.H. Tan and J.D. Kenneth Boutin, eds., Non-Traditional Security Issues in Southeast Asia (Singapore: Institute of Defense and Strategic Studies, 2001). 30. Mark A.R. Kleiman, Illicit Drugs and the Terrorist Threat: Causal Links and Implications for Domestic Drug Control Policy (CRS Report for Congress, 20 April 2004), pp. 1-2. 31. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes, “The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and Terrorism Prevention”, September 2016 < https:// www.unodc.org/unodc/en/terrorism/>. 32. Institute for Economics and Peace, Global Terrorism Index 2015 (New York and Sidney: IEP, 2015), p. 56. 33. Institute for Economics and Peace, Global Terrorism Index 2016 (New York and Sidney: IEP, 2016). 34. To get more information about the Vision of Humanity and its activities, see its homepage at http://visionofhumanity.org/about/ . 35. Institute for Economics and Peace, Global Terrorism Index 2017 (New York and Sidney: IEP, 2017), p. 10. 36. Ibid., p. 100. 37. Bureau of Counterterrorism and Countering Violent Extremism, Country Reports on Terrorism 2016 (Washington DC: US Department of State Publications, July 2017). 38. Ibid., p. 296. COUNTERING NARCOTERRORISM: GLOBAL LESSONS LEARNED 39. Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, 1988. 40. World Conference on Human Rights, Vienna, Austria, 14-25 June 1993. 41. United Nations Declaration on the 49th Session of the UN General Assembly, 2005. 42. United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes, World Drug Report 2016 (Vienna: UNODC Division for

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