De Lima urges Duterte to ratify UN treaty on enforced disappearances
MANILA, Philippines — To provide stronger mechanisms against enforced disappearances in the country, opposition Senator Leila de Lima is urging President Rodrigo Duterte to ratify the United Nations (UN) treaty on enforced disappearances.
De Lima has filed Senate Resolution No. 969 which urged the President to ratify the United Nations International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (CED) to “strengthen access to justice and the right to effective remedy.”
“It is clear that despite the enactment of the Anti-Enforced or Involuntary Disappearance Act of 2012, thousands remain missing and possibly many of them already dead, without any effective and clear action plan from our government,” De Lima said in a statement.
The senator noted that there are 1,996 documented cases of enforced disappearance in the country, 1,165 of which are missing and 244 are found dead.
She also said that the UN Convention remains to be the only human rights treaty which the Philippines has not ratified despite the existence of Republic Act 10353 or the “Anti-Enforced or Involuntary Disappearance Act of 2012.”
There was also an issuance of the Administrative Order No. 35 creating the Inter-Agency Committee on Extra-legal killings, Enforced Disappearances, Torture and other Grave Violations of the Right to Life, Liberty and Security of Persons, but despite this, enforced disappearance remain rampant in the country, the senator said.
De Lima noted that several UN treaty monitoring bodies have recommended for the Philippines to ratify the CED. Nine states also recommended the ratification of CED during the third cycle of the Universal Period Review of the Philippines in 2017, while 15 states recommended probes of enforced disappearances. /muf
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