CHR: Death squads ‘strictly prohibited’ under Int’l Humanitarian Law
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) on Wednesday said forming death squads is prohibited under the International Humanitarian Law (IHL).
“IHL requires States to use only regular armed forces under strict military discipline thus this strictly prohibits death squads under all circumstances,” Jose Luis Martin Gascon, CHR chairman, said in a statement.
The CHR’s remark came after President Rodrigo Duterte expressed plans to create his own death squad to match the Sparrow Units employed by the New People’s Army (NPA) during the Marcos regime.
While the CHR recognized government’s duty to protect its citizens from lawless violence and terrorist acts, the constitutional body also reminded government it must still follow “due process and rule of law.”
“The State always has a duty to protect its citizens from all forms of harm including lawless violence and terrorist acts,” Gascon said, but: “This duty must at all times be undertaken in accordance with established rules of engagement; due process and rule of law guarantees; and International Humanitarian Law (IHL) principles.”
Duterte said the hit team, which he named “Duterte Death Squad,” would match NPA’s “talent in assassinating people.” /kga
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