The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its previous resolutions on the situation in the Philippines, in particular that of 15 September 2016(1),

–  having regard to the statements by the EU Delegation and the spokesperson of the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (VP/HR),

–  having regard to the diplomatic relations between the Philippines and the EU (formerly the European Economic Community (EEC)) established on 12 May 1964 with the appointment of the Philippine Ambassador to the EEC,

–  having regard to the status of the Philippines as a founding member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN),

–  having regard to the statement of 28 February 2017 by the International Commission of Jurists,

–  having regard to the Framework Agreement on Partnership and Cooperation between the European Union and its Member States, of the one part, and the Republic of the Philippines, of the other part,

–  having regard to the EU Guidelines on Human Rights,

–  having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948,

–  having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR),

–  having regard to Rules 135(5) and 123(4) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the Philippines and the EU have longstanding diplomatic, economic, cultural and political relations;

B.  whereas on 23 February 2017, an arrest warrant was issued against Senator Leila M. De Lima of the Philippines from the opposition Liberal Party on charges of alleged drug-related offences; whereas on 24 February Senator De Lima was arrested and detained; whereas, if convicted, Senator De Lima could face a sentence from 12 years up to life in prison and be expelled from the Senate;

C.  whereas there are serious concerns that the offences Senator De Lima has been charged with are almost entirely fabricated; whereas Amnesty International regards Senator De Lima as a prisoner of conscience;

D.  whereas Senator De Lima is a human rights advocate and the highest profile critic of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s anti-drug campaign; whereas she has openly condemned the Philippine Drug War; whereas Senator De Lima was the Chair of the Philippine’s Human Rights Commission; whereas there are serious concerns for the safety of Senator De Lima; whereas there are numerous claims of torture in places of detention that are not giving rise to inquiries;

E.  whereas on 19 September 2016, Senator De Lima was removed from her position as chairperson of the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights; whereas during her time as head of the Commission on Human Rights, Senator De Lima led the investigation into the alleged extrajudicial killings of an estimated 1 000 or more drug suspects in Davao, while President Duterte was mayor of the city; whereas following the hearings, Senator De Lima was exposed to a torrent of harassment and intimidation from the authorities, and these attacks have intensified over the last eight months;

F.  whereas on 2 March 2017, Human Rights Watch released its report ‘License to Kill: Philippine Police Killings in Duterte’s ‘War on Drugs’, which documented extrajudicial killings related to the anti-drug campaign;

G.  whereas over 7 000 drug-related killings by the police and vigilantes have been reported since President Duterte took office on 30 June 2016; whereas President Duterte has vowed to continue his anti-drug campaign until the end of the presidential term in 2022;

H.  whereas in response to the killing of officers by insurgents from the Communist New People’s Army (NPA) in the southern Philippines on 8 March 2017, President Duterte ordered the army to undertake counterinsurgency operations with disregard for collateral damage;

I.  whereas on 30 January 2017, the Philippine National Police temporarily suspended anti-drug operations by the police following a brutal, alleged anti-drug killing; whereas President Duterte ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to fill this gap in the anti-drug campaign;

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