Migrante on adoption of UN resolution: ‘Day of reckoning is at hand’
MANILA, Philippines — “The day of reckoning is at hand!”
Migrante International said this after the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) adopted a resolution mandating the body to report on the human-rights situation in the Philippines.
In a statement on Friday, Migrante said the resolution would “impute accountability” to the Philippine government, which launched its bloody drug war under President Rodrigo Duterte in 2016.
“After much striving in the international arena, Migrante International joins other Human Rights groups in welcoming the adoption by the [UNHRC] of the resolution calling for a comprehensive report on the bloody human-rights record of the Duterte regime,” the group said.
“This would impute accountability to the government as it gets compelled to allow independent investigations to be carried out so that perpetrators will finally be brought to justice,” it added.
Migrante, likewise, lauded the different human-rights groups for their “triumphant lobbying work and determination.”
These groups include Karapatan, the National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL), and the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP).
The UNHRC adopted on Thursday an Iceland-initiated resolution asking the council to look into the human-rights situation in the Philippines.
The resolution, backed by more than two dozen countries, received 18 affirmative votes and 14 negative votes during the UNHRC’s 41st session in Geneva, Switzerland.
“We view this development as a light that dispels the wretchedness confronting many Filipino families and communities struck by state terror,” Migrante further said as it pointed out the President’s apparent admission that his only sin is the extrajudicial killings linked to his brutal drug war.
“Duterte himself has admitted to his primary role in the brutal drug war killings that have claimed thousands of lives, the overwhelming majority of whom are from poor localities,” Migrante said.
The recently adopted resolution also urged Philippine government to “take all necessary measures to prevent extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances.”
It called on the government to conduct “impartial investigations and to hold perpetrators accountable in accordance with international norms and standards including due process and the rule of law.”
The resolution also asked the government to cooperate with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, including “facilitating country visits and preventing and refraining from all acts of intimidation or retaliation” on human rights defenders.
“In addition to the council’s concern on the Tokhang-related extrajudicial killings, the violent persecution of rights advocates and critics will be taken into account in upcoming probes,” Migrante said.
“Tensions have been running high after the Duterte regime intensified its vicious assaults on the people’s defenders. A tremendous upswing in the cases of carnage and illegal arrests of activists and human rights workers occurred in the last few weeks,” it added.
Other human rights groups also lauded the action of the UNHRC to adopt the said resolution.
But Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. called the resolution “politically partisan and one-sided.”
The President, meanwhile, said he would review the possibility of allowing investigators enter the Philippines to look into the drug war killings.
“Let them state their purpose, and I will review,” Duterte earlier told reporters in Malacañang. /jpv
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