CHR calls on PH gov'n to uphold duty on human rights transparency

Brandon Parsons
March 15, 2018

"As an agency of the UN, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights is expected to fulfill its duties within the framework set out by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter", he added.

He said the Philippine leader "needs to submit himself to some sort of psychiatric examination".

The ICC announced last month it was launching a study of the killings, which Philippine police put at 4,000 but rights groups say is actually triple that number.

But he abandoned the process in November, after what he called repeated attacks by the NPA during talks.

The Government petition included Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, appointed in 2014 as United Nations special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, who was listed as a senior member of the Maoist rebel group. He stopped doing this just a few months later after he said he was being repeatedly attacked by the New People's Army, claiming in its petition to the court that they are "using acts of terror to sow fear and panic to overthrow the government". Since then, Duterte has openly vented his fury at the group, saying he considers them a risk to national security on the same level as pro-Islamic State militants and telling the military to "shoot women (rebels) in the vagina".

By declaring groups and individuals terrorists, the Government would be able to monitor them more closely, track finances and curb access to resources, among other measures.

Seen as part of President Rodrigo Duterte's move against dissent, critics tag the list as a "government hit list" which could further endanger the lives of human rights workers.

Ms Tauli-Corpuz denounced the Government, calling the complaint "baseless, malicious and irresponsible".

Prior to Zeid's advice to Duterte to undergo psychiatric examination, the United Nations human rights chief expressed dismay over the President's order to the PNP not to cooperate with the United Nations special rapporteur who will investigate the crackdown on illicit drugs trade in the Philippines.

He then said he would prefer a firing squad to prison.He has recently changed his tune, telling security forces not to cooperate should there be any worldwide investigation.

Also on the list were four former Catholic priests and former congressman Satur Ocampo, who said he would challenge any "terrorist" label.

"It is apparent that the ICC is being utilized as a political tool against the Philippines", Duterte said in a statement, adding the ICC examination was "unduly and maliciously created".

Mr Duterte's spokesman did not respond to requests for comment.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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