Apple has removed a number of violent games from the App Store after a petition signed by The Asian Network of People Who Use Drugs (ANPUD). The games in question were said to glorify the extrajudicial killings of a number of suspected drug dealers and users in the Philippines, some of them including the Philippine National Police director general Ronald dela Rosa and the country’s president, Rodrigo Duterte, shooting people.
Tim Cook received an open letter from the ANPUD in which the organization detailed its concerns over the games normalizing murder. The petition had been backed by over 100 organizations and said that more than 13,000 people had been killed by the police and public without any judicial process.
Numerous apps currently available through Apple are actively promoting the war on people who use drugs in the Philippines, a war that has resulted in the state-endorsed murders of more than 13,000 people (22) – many of them children (23) – ostensibly suspected of using or selling drugs since June 2016. Duterte’s war on people who use drugs, that is often referred as ‘War on Poor’ has brought destruction of millions of lives of people who use drugs, including thousands who are imprisoned under inhumane conditions, their families and children who were already the most marginalized in and vulnerable to the Philippines system.
Ronald dela Rosa has been accused of instigating a ‘shoot to kill’ policy in the police as well as providing a ‘license to kill’ to the country’s private citizens who are not prosecuted for killing anyone suspected to be involved in the drugs trade.
ANPUD then explained that while Apple did not respond, a number of the games seem to have been removed from the App Store.
We did not receive a direct response from Mr. Cook or Apple Inc. however, most of the apps (games) no longer appear in the search result of app store. These games include ‘Duterte knows Kung Fu: Pinoy Crime Fighter’, ‘Duterte Running Man Challenge Game, ‘Fighting Crime 2’, ‘Tsip Bato: Ang Bumangga Giba!’ that featured Duterte or Philippine National Police chief Bato De La Rosa shooting down criminals.