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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. Photo: Jung Yeon-je/AFP/Getty Images

More than 50,000 people have been arrested in the Philippines as President Rodrigo Duterte turns his focus from drugs to minor infractions such as drinking in public or "even being outdoors without a shirt," the New York Times reports.

The big picture: The Philippines' brutal campaign against drugs shifted in June when Duterte said there were "simply too many crimes," the Times reports. The idea is to target simpler "crimes" before they escalate into larger problems, an investigator at the police station in Tondo, Adonis Sugui, told the NYT. "They have a drink, they hold people up, shoot each other, cause mischief. ... Once they start drinking, their mind is altered," he said.

The details: One man that was arrested for not wearing a shirt — charged with "causing alarm and scandal," per the NYT — died in police custody. Two inmates were charged with his murder.

  • Another man, Edwin Panis, was arrested for drinking beer in public with his friends.

In response to backlash over the campaign, Duterte said that he did not order police to arrest loiterers, the NYT reports, only to break up their groups.

"I think you can expect more repression, more confusion, more contradictory statements from the president. To the point that even his own people will not be sure what they should be doing."
— Jose Manuel Diokno, dean of the De La Salle University College of Law in Manila to the NYT

Go deeper

Trump grants flurry of last-minute pardons

Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty

President Trump issued 73 pardons and commuted the sentences of 70 individuals early Wednesday, 11 hours from leaving office.

Why it matters: It's a last-minute gift to some of the president's loyalists and an evident use of executive power with only hours left of his presidency. Axios reported in December that Trump planned to grant pardons to "every person who ever talked to me."

Trump revokes ethics order barring former aides from lobbying

Photo: Spencer Platt via Getty

Shortly after pardoning members of Congress and lobbyists convicted on corruption charges, President Trump revoked an executive order barring former officials from lobbying for five years after leaving his administration.

Why it matters: The order, which was signed eight days after he took office, was an attempt to fulfill his campaign promise to "drain the swamp."

  • But with less than 12 hours left in office, Trump has now removed those limitations on his own aides.

Trump pardons former GOP fundraiser Elliott Broidy

President Trump has pardoned Elliott Broidy, a former top Republican fundraiser who pleaded guilty late last year to conspiring to violate foreign lobbying laws as part of a campaign to sway the administration on behalf of Chinese and Malaysian interests.

Why it matters: Broidy was a deputy finance chair for the Republican National Committee early in Trump’s presidency, and attempted to leverage his influence in the Trump administration on behalf of his clients. The president's decision to pardon Broidy represents one last favor for a prominent political ally.