Dispatch from Crame No. 170: Sen. Leila M. de Lima’s Statement on PHL’s supposed sterling performance at the Universal Periodic Review of the UN Human Rights Council

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Malacañang basically released fake news when it congratulated itself and DFA Sec. Alan Peter Cayetano for the country’s supposedly sterling performance at the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC). Malacañang says proof of the world body’s acclamation of the Philippine government’s human rights record is the former’s adoption of the Philippine government’s report.

This is of course a lot of bull crap.

The true measure of the Philippines’ performance in the UPR is the nature of the questions, comments, and recommendations thrown at the Philippine country report and the actions taken on these. These are all included in the “outcome report” prepared by a troika of three rapporteur States, the UPR Working Group consisting of 47 members of the UNHRC, the Philippines, and the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR). The “outcome report” provides a summary of the actual discussions in the UPR. It therefore consists of the questions, comments and recommendations made by States on the Philippines. This is the report “adopted” in the plenary session of the UNHRC, not the Philippine country report.

The UPR review on the Philippines for this cycle started way back last May 2017. During that time, 45 out of 47 states participating in the UPR had expressed concern over the spate of killings in Duterte’s drug war. In its response, the Philippines ignored a total of 44 recommendations on extra-judicial killings. It also refused the recommendation to allow UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions Agnes Callamard to visit the country and conduct an independent probe. There was a total of 257 recommendations of which less than half were accepted by the Philippines.

With 257 recommendations, 44 of them on extra-judicial killings summarily ignored by the Philippine government, the “outcome report” on the Philippines adopted by the UNHRC plenary is actually the world’s collective condemnation of the Duterte government’s human rights record. To spin it otherwise as a resounding victory for Duterte and Cayetano merely proves that Malacañang is now the number one leading source of fake news in the country.

Ang galing talaga nila sa propaganda

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