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Nonoy Espina Was at Forefront of Struggle Against Attacks on the Media

The Philippines lost one of its foremost press freedom fighters Wednesday night. Jose Jaime Espina, popularly known as “Nonoy,” died from liver cancer just days after recovering from Covid-19, his family said. He was 59. A longtime journalist based…
National Union of Journalists of the Philippines chairman Nonoy Espina speaks to other journalists and activists as they gather to hold a vigil on the eve of the promulgation of the Maguindanao massacre trial on December 18, 2019 in Manila, Philippines.
News

Stunning Admission Highlights Need for UN Inquiry

(Geneva) – The Philippine Department of Justice admitted police culpability in thousands of “drug war” killings, Human Rights Watch said today. The surprising admission provides further reason for the United Nations Human Rights Council, meeting in…
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News

President Says He’ll Block ABS-CBN Even with New Franchise

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte declared this week that he would not recognize any new license granted by Congress to ABS-CBN, the major television network that the government forced off the air in July 2020. Duterte repeated his claim – already…
Employees light candles outside the headquarters of broadcast network ABS-CBN corp. on May 5, 2020, after the network was ordered to halt operations after its congressional franchise expired, in Quezon city, Metro Manila, Philippines.
News

Upsurge in Attacks on Activists, Community Leaders, Rights Defenders

(Manila, January 13, 2021) – The Philippine government’s “drug war” killings intensified during the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, as did unnecessary arrests during lockdowns, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2021. Attacks by the police,…
Detainees sleep in an open basketball court inside the Quezon City Jail in Quezon City, Philippines on July 24, 2020. 
News
In the coming weeks, 189 countries from around the world will elect 23 members to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW committee) for the 2021-2024 term. The Philippine government recently …
News

Item 10 General Debate - HRC45

Thank you, Madam President. On behalf of 14 organisations, including colleagues in the Philippines, we are deeply disappointed that the draft Item 10 resolution on the Philippines fails to reflect the gravity of the situation, including as…
Delegates sit at the opening of the 41th session of the Human Rights Council, at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, June 24, 2019.
News
Last year in Geneva, Iceland put the Philippines in the hot seat at the United Nations Human Rights Council for its murderous “war on drugs.” The boldness of a small country with no axe to grind against the Philippine government – acting solely…
Delegates sit at the opening of the 41th session of the Human Rights Council, at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, June 24, 2019.
News

Support at UN Human Rights Council Crucial to Establish International Inquiry

Last year, European Union member states at the United Nations Human Rights Council voted decisively in support of a resolution mandating the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to report on grave rights abuses in the Philippines. The report,…
Veiled protesters, mostly relatives of victims of alleged extra-judicial killings, display placards during a protest outside the Philippine military and police camps
News

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…
Delegates sit at the opening of the 41th session of the Human Rights Council, at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, June 24, 2019.
News

Beijing’s Growing Repression Needs a Global Response

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused the suspension of many high-profile international visits, but Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s appearance in Italy today – to be followed by visits to France, Germany, and the Netherlands – presents an opportunity…
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks during the Special ASEAN-China Foreign Ministers' meeting on the Novel Coronavirus in Vientiane, Laos, February 20, 2020.
News

Government’s Announced Review Panel for ‘Drug War’ Killings a Ruse

The Philippines came under scrutiny when the United Nations Human Rights Council convened in Geneva on Tuesday. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michele Bachelet gave the stark findings of her office’s report on the Philippines, which the council…
Delegates sit at the opening of the 41th session of the Human Rights Council, at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, June 24, 2019.
News

Enhanced Interactive Dialogue on the High Commissioner’s report on the Philippines, 30 June 2020

Thank you, Madam President. The High Commissioner’s report on the Philippines provides a stark summary of the widespread and systematic rights violations ongoing in the country. Its findings on the murderous “war on drugs,” which has resulted in…
News
As a former journalist in the Philippines, I was deeply angered and saddened when Maria Ressa, the founder of the crusading journalism outlet Rappler, and Reynaldo Santos Jr., a former writer there, were sentenced on Monday to up to six years in…
Maria Ressa arrives at court in Manila, June 15, 2020.
News

Manila Court Convicts Duterte Critic Maria Ressa for Libel

(Manila) – The conviction of a prominent journalist for criminal libel is a devastating blow to media freedom in the Philippines, Human Rights Watch said today. On June 15, 2020, a Manila court issued a guilty verdict for Maria Ressa, the founder and…
Maria Ressa arrives at court in Manila, June 15, 2020.
News

Duterte Should Rescind ABS-CBN Shutdown; Congress Should Renew License

(Manila) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte should rescind an order to shut down ABS-CBN, the country’s largest broadcast television and radio network, Human Rights Watch said today. The House of Representatives, whose inaction on…
Employees light candles outside the headquarters of broadcast network ABS-CBN corp. on May 5, 2020, after the network was ordered to halt operations after its congressional franchise expired, in Quezon city, Metro Manila, Philippines.
News

Case Against ABS-CBN Attacks Media Freedom

(Manila) – The Philippine Congress should reject President Rodrigo Duterte’s apparent misuse of regulatory powers against the country’s largest broadcast network, Human Rights Watch said today. On February 10, 2020, the Office of the Solicitor…
Journalists and supporters, wearing black, display their messages during a protest against the recent Securities and Exchange Commission's revocation of the registration of Rappler, an online news outfit, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018, northeast of Manila, Philip