CALD Resolution No. 4 S. 2016

August 26, 2016 4:06 am Published by Leave your thoughts

CALD Resolution No. 4 S. 2016


CALD resolution condemning in strongest terms the spate of extrajudicial killings in the Philippines, and calling on the Philippine government to publicly condemn and investigate summary executions and to bring to justice the perpetrators of such deplorable acts   

The Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD):

Aware that the administration of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, which took office on 30 June, embarked on a nationwide campaign against illegal drugs and criminality – societal ills that the President promised to eradicate within the first 6 months of his term;      

Mindful that as a direct or indirect consequence of such intensified campaign, the Philippine National Police (PNP) reported that 1,779 people have lost their lives since 1 July; 712 in police operations, and 1067 outside of police operations, including those possibly killed by vigilantes or by drug syndicates themselves;

Conscious that those killed in police operations allegedly fought or resisted arrest, prompting the authorities to shoot them in self-defense; although in a number of cases, reports showed that the suspects already surrendered, or were clearly in police custody, when the shootings happened;

Cognizant that the killings done by vigilantes, if they were true, could be attributed to the “culture of impunity” that incentivizes violence through bounties or promises of immunity from persecution;

Noting that a great majority of those who died as a result of the government’s anti- illegal drug campaign came from the poorest and most vulnerable segments of society – manifesting a worrying trend which appears to target the poor and the powerless; and

Aware that due process, rule of law and respect for fundamental human rights, particularly the presumption of innocence and right of defence, have been compromised in the course of this illegal drugs campaign;

Hereby:

Condemns in strongest terms the spate of extrajudicial killings of suspected drug dealers and users in the Philippines as this creates a climate of fear, insecurity and violence that has no place in a democratic society;

Calls on Philippine President Duterte to remain true to his inaugural speech’s promise of uncompromising “adherence to due process and rule of law” by publicly comdemning extrajudicial killings, investigating allegations of killings and extrajudicial executions, and bringing to justice the perpetrators of such acts;

Welcomes the ongoing investigations on these summary executions being conducted by the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights; trusts that these investigations would be exhaustive, impartial and fair; and urges the continuous and earnest cooperation of all parties concerned in these hearings and in other similar investigations that might be initiated in the future;

Expresses concern that those personalities, agencies or institutions which spoke against these summary executions have been a target of political harassment and cyber-bullying – creating a “chilling effect” with detrimental consequences to freedom of speech or expression;

Laments the seeming lack of respect for the principle of separation of powers or check-and-balances, as evidenced by the stance taken against co-equal branches of government or a constitutional commission that raised issues regarding the ongoing illegal drugs campaign;

Recognizes that while the campaign against illegal drugs and criminality is part of the police power of the state and a noteworthy goal of any government, law enforcement efforts should always remain consistent with the rule of law and the country’s human rights obligations; and

Reiterates the liberal belief that both national and human security, in the long run, are an inevitable result of the respect for, and promotion of, rule of law, due process and fundamental human rights – principles which are enshrined in the Philippine constitution and are globally recognized as essential in a functioning democracy.

For the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats:

Oyun Sanjaasuren

Chairperson

Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats

26 August 2016

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This post was written by CALD

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The Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats (CALD) was inaugurated in Bangkok in 1993, with the support of then Thai Prime Minister Chuan Leekpai and South Korea’s Kim Dae-Jung. CALD, which offers a unique platform for dialogue and cooperation, is the only regional alliance of liberal and democratic political parties in Asia.
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