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UN Human Rights Council Should Launch Own Investigation

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte’s chilling promise to “drug pushers, holdup men, and do-nothings, you better get out […] because I’ll kill you” may finally come back to haunt him. Today the International Criminal Court Prosecutor Fatou…
Protesters hold up pictures of victims of extrajudicial killings during Human Rights Day protests in Manila
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Duterte Administration Had Once ‘Red-Tagged’ Both as Insurgents

On August 17 in the central Philippine island of Negros, unidentified gunmen fatally shot Zara Alvarez, a legal worker for the human rights group Karapatan. Alvarez, 39, was the thirteenth human rights defender killed in the Philippines in the past…
Zara Alvarez
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Thousands of children in the Philippines have suffered lasting physical, emotional, and economic harm from President Rodrigo Duterte’s abusive “war on drugs,” Human Rights Watch said in a report and accompanying video released today. Governments at the…
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Upsurge in Attacks on Activists, Environmentalists

(Manila) – The Philippine government’s murderous “war on drugs” remained the Philippines’ gravest human rights concern in 2019, Human Rights Watch said today in releasing its World Report 2020. Security forces were also implicated in often deadly…
Veiled protesters, mostly relatives of victims of alleged extra-judicial killings, display placards during a protest outside the Philippine military and police camps
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Manila Court to Issue Verdicts in 2009 Maguindanao Killings

(Manila) – The Philippine authorities’ failure to arrest 80 suspects in the 2009 Maguindanao Massacre case puts victims’ families at grave risk, Human Rights Watch said today. On December 19, 2019, a special court in Taguig City, Metro Manila, is…
People commemorate the 10th anniversary of the gruesome Ampatuan Massacre in Manila, Philippines on November 23, 2019.
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International Criminal Court Requests Footage of Rights Abuses

The International Criminal Court (ICC) recently made a surprising request for its preliminary examination into thousands of alleged extrajudicial killings in Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s “war on drugs.” The court said it…
Image from On the President’s Orders
News

Government, Rebel Forces in Negros Should End Unlawful Attacks

Killings in the Philippines’ Negros Oriental province surged over the weekend, with the 14th fatal shooting on Negros island in a week. Media reports said gunmen shot dead Anaciancino Rosalita in a public market in Canlaon City. Local activists…
Supporters shout slogans as they hold paper crosses bearing names of killed people from Negros Oriental province during a rally in metropolitan Manila, Philippines on Monday, April 8, 2019.
News

President Duterte Could Still Face Prosecution by International Criminal Court

One year after President Rodrigo Duterte formally notified the United Nations secretary-general that the Philippines was leaving the International Criminal Court (ICC), the withdrawal is now official. That means that any future…
Philippines: UN Members Should Denounce Killings, Abuses PHOTO
News

Reports of Ill-Treatment Show Need for Transparency, Monitoring

(Paris) – Uzbek authorities should immediately and unconditionally release an Afghan citizen whose 13-year imprisonment and alleged torture in custody have only recently become known, the Association for Human Rights in Central Asia, International…
A guard in a solitary confinement block at an unidentified prison in Uzbekistan. Prisoners in solitary confinement in Uzbekistan’s prisons experience cramped cells without bedding—some in total darkness, others with permanent bright lights
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New Police Campaign Has Nabbed 8,000 Suspects, Many Detained in Overcrowded Jails

  (Manila) – The Philippine National Police (PNP) should immediately end a “crime prevention” campaign that has disproportionately targeted “loiterers” in low-income areas of Manila and other cities, Human Rights Watch said today. Since June…
Detainees sit next to an anti-drug mural of Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte inside the Manila City Jail, October 16, 2017.
News
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is afraid. That’s the signal he sent last week by announcing that the Philippines will withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC) “effective immediately.” Duterte sought to…
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte stands during a call with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) economic ministers in Manila, Philippines, September 6, 2017.
News

ICC’s ‘Drug War’ Examination Not Stopped by Withdrawal from Court

Today’s statement by President Rodrigo Duterte to withdraw the Philippines from the International Criminal Court (ICC) was no surprise. Soon after taking office in June 2016, Duterte unleashed his “war on drugs,” which has left more…
Philippines' President Rodrigo Duterte gestures during the opening session of the ASEAN and European Union summit at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay, metro Manila, Philippines on November 14, 2017.
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UN Investigation Still Urgently Needed

The International Criminal Court (ICC) will conduct a “preliminary examination” into killings linked to the Philippine government’s “war on drugs,” the court’s prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced today. Bensouda…
A protester lights candles next to a placard, seeking justice for killings in President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs, during a protest in front of the Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters in Quezon city, Metro Manila, Philippines August 23, 201
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The buzzwords “bloodless,” “transparent,” and “accountability” are being deployed by Philippine National Police Director General Ronald dela Rosa and his colleagues in a bid to rebrand President Rodrigo Duterte’s murderous “war on drugs…
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Independent Investigation Needed to Clarify Death Toll, Promote Accountability

(New York) – The Philippine government should urgently support the creation of a United Nations-led investigation into the thousands of killings linked to its “war on drugs,” Human Rights Watch said today. A UN-led probe would both help…
Protesters hold placards and lit candles at the wake of Kian delos Santos, a 17-year-old high school student, who was among the people shot dead last week in an escalation of President Rodrigo Duterte's war on drugs, in Caloocan City, Metro Manila, Philip
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False Claims of Accountability and the International Criminal Court

The Philippine government of President Rodrigo Duterte today implied that the International Criminal Court (ICC) should not investigate Duterte’s “war on drugs,” which nongovernmental organizations and media outlets estimate has…
President Rodrigo Duterte’s official spokesperson Harry Roque at the House of Congress in Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines May 15, 2017.
News

Investigate and Shutter Unofficial Police Lock-Up Cells

(New York) – The Philippine government should immediately release the alleged drug suspects unlawfully detained in a Manila police station “secret jail,” and ensure their protection after release, Human Right Watch said today. The…
Philippines: Release and Protect “Secret Jail” Detainees PHOTO
Report
Summary On the afternoon of October 14, 2016, four masked gunmen stormed the Manila home of Paquito Mejos, a 53-year-old father of five who worked as an electrician on construction sites. An occasional user of shabu, a methamphetamine,…