Over 60 Groups Urge UN Body to Ensure Accountability
(Geneva) – The United Nations Human Rights Council should establish an independent international investigation on extrajudicial killings and other human rights violations in the Philippines, Human Rights Watch said today, joining dozens of other human rights and civil society groups worldwide in calling for an investigation. The council will convene its 45th session on September 14, 2020.
On August 27, 62 human rights and civil society groups sent a letter to UN member and observer countries at the Human Rights Council to express their “continued grave concern over ongoing extrajudicial executions and other serious human rights violations” in the Philippines. Over 30 groups from the Philippines signed the letter, representing much of the country’s human rights and civil society movement.
“The several dozen Philippine and international groups calling for an investigation into the Philippines is a remarkable show of solidarity that members of the UN Human Rights Council should not ignore,” said Laila Matar, deputy Geneva director at Human Rights Watch. “The extrajudicial killings and other severe rights abuses in the Philippines continue unabated, and the groups endorsing this letter are saying enough is enough.”
The four-page letter and its six-page annex outline the “grave concern over ongoing extrajudicial executions and other serious human rights violations in the context of the ‘war on drugs’ in the Philippines, fueled by incitement to violence and discrimination by the highest levels of government with near-total impunity.” The groups urged the council to respond “robustly” to the recent report on the situation in the Philippines by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.