DRUG WARS IN THE PHILIPPINES by Adam Dean

Exhibition from February 16 to March 4 | Institut Français de Birmanie

Opening on Friday 16 February | 8pm

In Autumn 2016, Adam Dean spent a month on the streets of Manila documenting Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody anti-drug crusade for National Geographic Magazine. Promising to rid the country of drug-related crime, Duterte unleashed the police force on Filipino citizens. The resulting offensive left a wake of killings of unconvicted drug users at the hands of police and alleged vigilantes. 

The drug war led to a huge spike in murder rates and human rights advocates now estimate that between 7000 and 12,000 have been killed since July 2016, when the war on drugs began.

By night Adam tracked the police investigators as they raced to murder scenes across Manila and by day documented the wakes, funerals and unique Filipino death rituals for victims of this war on drugs.

Adam is a British photographer based in Bangkok mainly working for The New York Times, TIME Magazine and National Geographic Magazine. He has been covering Myanmar since Saffron Revolution in 2007. He has worked in the country every year since, documenting its transition to democracy. He photographed Aung San Suu Kyi when she was released from house arrest, traveled the country with her in the 2012 bi-elections and 2014 general elections and photographed the iconic and controversial TIME Magazine cover of Wirathu with the headline “The Face of Buddhist Terror.” In 2016 he was the first western photographer to get into Hpakant to document the jade mines and was one of the first photographers in Bangladesh to photograph the arrival of Rohingya refugees in August 2017.

You can see more of his work at: www.adamdean.net and follow him on Instagram: @adamjdean