PH seeks partnerships in rights protection of Filipinos who ‘respect peoples’ agency’ — Duterte
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said the Philippines is seeking “stronger partnerships” to protect Filipinos’ rights, but only of those who “respect our peoples’ agency.”
Duterte said this in his speech before the 76th UN General Assembly where he discussed how he dealt with criminals using the full force of the law while pushing for peace and security in the country.
Duterte likewise insisted that meaningful change comes internally and not from the “imposition of one’s will over another.”
“The Philippines seeks stronger partnerships to protect the rights of Filipinos and realize the full potential of our nation. But let me be clear – what we mean is partnership that respects our peoples’ agency,” he said.
“Meaningful change, to be enduring, must come from within. The imposition of one’s will over another – no matter how noble the intent – has never worked in the past. And it never will in the future,” Duterte added.
He also emphasized “pragmatic approaches” in dealing with “complex” problems in nation-building where, he said, solutions may be imperfect but “actually work.”
“In dealing with complex problems in nation-building, let us consider pragmatic approaches that square ideals with reality. Sure, they may lead us to imperfect solutions – but solutions, nonetheless, that actually work,” he said.
In issues hounding his controversial drug war, Duterte said he has ordered the Department of Justice and the Philippine National Police to review the conduct of the campaign against illegal drugs.
He added that the country also recently finalized its joint program on human rights with the UN Human Rights Council.
Duterte has been criticizing the UN for meddling in Philippine state affairs. In 2016, he threatened to withdraw the country’s membership in the UN after special rapporteurs from the intergovernmental body called to put an end to extrajudicial killings and criticized his administration.
His recent remark comes after the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) authorized the start of an investigation into the drug war killings in the country.
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