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Report: COVID Curfew Violator Died After Exercise Punishment

Newser — Rob Quinn

Relatives of a Filipino man say he died two days after police enforcing coronavirus restrictions forced him to exercise as punishment. The BBC reports that relatives of Darren Manaog Penaredondo say guards in the city of General Trias stopped him for violating restrictions after he was seen buying drinking water after 6pm on Thursday.

Officers allegedly forced him to perform 300 squat-like exercises along with others who had violated the curfew. His partner, Reichelyn Balce, says he struggled to walk on Friday and collapsed and died the next day.

Balce tells Rappler that Penaredondo told her that curfew violators were ordered to perform the exercises in a plaza outside a municipal hall—and if they were not in sync, they had to start over.

The city's mayor has ordered an investigation. The chief of police says violators are only supposed to receive lectures, not physical punishment. In a report last month, Human Rights Watch warned that people accused of violating COVID restrictions in parts of the Philippines were subjected to "cruel, inhuman, and degrading" punishment, including being locked in dog cages.

The Philippines placed the capital, Manila, and four provinces under a stricter lockdown last week as cases surged.

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