Respect UNHRC action to look into PH rights situation, gov’t told
MANILA, Philippines — Human rights advocates have called on the government to respect the move of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), which adopted Iceland’s resolution prompting for scrutiny of the Philippines’ human rights situation, including drug war killings.
Rev. Marma Urbano of the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines said Friday that the government should recognize and follow “internally-led mechanisms.”
“We support the resolution urging the government to prevent extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances, and to carry out an impartial investigation in accordance with international norms and standards,” Urbano said during a press conference at the National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) in Quezon City.
Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo earlier said the Philippine government rejects the UN resolution because it was based on false information and unverified facts.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin also said the resolution will have “no effect” and that “such resolutions especially those passed by a tiny minority can and will be ignored.”
But Fr. Jonash Joyohoy, leader of the National Priest Organization of the Aglipayan Church, contradicted Locsin.
He said the resolution will have an effect on the incidence of human rights violations in the country.
“I don’t believe Locsin that the resolution will have no effect. May tragedy of killings nung panahon ni Gloria Macapagal Arroyo [pero] noong makapasok ang special rapporteur, doon nagsimula bumaba ang bilang ng biktima ng pamamaslang,” Joyohoy said.
Joyohoy also said perpetrators of the killings will be punished under the resolution, which states that the UN body should undertake “impartial investigations and to hold perpetrators accountable in accordance with international norms and standards including due process and the rule of law.”
“Kahit papaano ‘yung perpetrators sa baba tasked to carry out the killings and different forms of human rights violations will think twice. Dahil ngayon may panawagan na managot at maparusahan ng perpetrators. Siguradong sila ay mapapatawan na ng parusa when time will come,” he noted.
Eighteen of 47 members of UNHRC approved a resolution filed by Iceland that urges the international body to deepen its investigation into the human rights situation in the Philippines, including death in the Duterte administration’s war on drugs.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.