Dispatch from Crame No. 234: Sen. Leila M. de Lima’s Statement on Duterte’s Rejection of EU Aid

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Duterte’s rejection of aid from the European Union amounting to 383 million pesos, and possibly an additional 2.4 billion pesos, is how much he is arrogantly willing the people to suffer in the pursuit of an EJK policy in his drug war.

Duterte makes it appear as an act of independence, when it is actually the response of a government that is increasingly becoming a rogue State among the community of nations. This is just one side of the cost of Duterte’s EJK policy and rejection of human rights. The other is the surrender of PH territories to China in exchange for China’s support regardless of his human rights record and murderous policy in the war on drugs.

While he rejects free aid and grants from the EU supposedly in the name of preserving the country’s sovereignty because of the EU’s human rights concerns, Duterte has unqualifiedly abandoned Philippine territories in the West Philippine Sea to China in exchange for loans to finance a debt-driven economic program, without questions asked on the country’s human rights situation.

The abomination in Duterte’s foreign policy is patent. He will not accept free aid from countries that ask him to stop killing Filipinos, but will surrender territory to a government that will ignore his murders. He even has the effrontery of advising a fellow ASEAN leader to ignore human rights advocates which, in plain terms, is an incitement to commit more crimes against humanity in the region.

This fixation on his freedom to commit murders is losing us territory to China and free aid from the EU, when all that is asked of his government is what any civilized nation is only expected to commit to in these modern times: observe and protect human rights, and stop killing your own people.

In simple terms, what Duterte is telling the international community is to let him go on killing his own people. He will be generous to those who do, and arrogant to those who do not, even if it means the surrender of Philippine territories to those who do and the rejection of billions in foreign grants from those who do not. Our foreign policy is now reduced to one man’s inexplicable lust for blood and his disregard for the value of human life. ###

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