US P100-M aid for drug war to result to rights violations—militant solons
Militant lawmakers from the Makabayan bloc criticized the United States government’s P100 million donation to the Philippines’ drug demand reduction program, saying funding the government’s drug program would only “result to further human rights violations.”
In a press conference on Thursday, progressive lawmakers—Bayan Muna partylist Representative Carlos Zarate, and ACT Teachers partylist Representatives Antonio Tinio and France Castro—hit President Duterte for allowing the recently-ended Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) be a venue for the US to assert its control in the Philippines.
Aside from the US President Donald Trump’s plan to expand US military bases in the country, the solons also questioned US’ donation to the Duterte administration, particularly in its drug programs.
“(That aid) would only result to further human rights violations,” said Zarate.
Tinio said that the US donating to police and military forces that were found to have committed human rights violations would be violation of the US federal law.
The White House announced on Wednesday that Trump pledged $2-million support for “drug demand reduction programs” in the Philippines. It did not, however, elaborate whether the funding will cover law enforcement activities against illegal drugs.
Trump will also give an additional $14.3 million (P715 million) for Marawi City to “address the humanitarian needs of 360,000 displaced persons and to support stabilization and a speedy recovery.”
Unlike Trump, his predecessor former US President Barack Obama was critical of President Duterte’s drug war, which had led to the killing of thousands of Filipinos.
Obama’s comments drew Duterte’s ire, prompting the latter to launch constant verbal attacks against the former US leader. /je
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