EU, CHR invited but declined to attend SONA — Palace

By: - Reporter / @JhoannaBINQ
/ 04:52 PM July 27, 2017
Ernesto Abella 2

Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella. PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

The European Union (EU) and Commission on Human Rights (CHR) were invited to President Rodrigo Duterte’s second State of the Nation Address (Sona) but both institutions declined, Malacanang said on Thursday.

Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella, in a televised press briefing, said both offices declined the invitations from the House of Representatives.


News reports earlier said the government did not invite the EU to the Sona, an apparent breach in both diplomatic protocol and tradition. CHR Chair Chito Gascon was also quoted saying that “no invitation was given” to the commission.

However, Abella clarified that invitations for the SONA do not come from the Palace.


“The invitations come from the House. And they (EU and CHR) were actually invited but they declined,” Abella said.

The EU, a major trading partner of the Philippines, has been critical of the Duterte administration’s war against drugs. In March, the European Parliament called for an international probe into the “unlawful killings and other violations.” A few months later, the Philippine government declined P13.9 billion worth of aid from the regional bloc.

Last week, a group of EU lawmakers visited jailed Senator Leila de Lima, Duterte’s staunch critic.

CHR also has been vocal against Duterte’s drug war as it has launched investigations of alleged human rights violations committed during the police’s anti-drug operations.

In a press conference after his Sona, Duterte said the constitutional body “better be abolished.” KS

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: CHR, Commission on Human Rights, Ernesto Abella, EU, European Union, Malacañang, Sona, State of the Nation Address
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2020 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.