Zarate & Human Rights Watch blocking US sale of attack helis to PH

Zarate & Human Rights Watch blocking US sale of attack helis to PH

The sales of attack helicopters in the country from the United States seems to be having a big hiccup.

The Philippine embassy in Washington defended the US renewed interest to sell military equipment to the country.

US earlier approved the possible sale of Bell and Boeing attack helicopters to the Philippines, its long-time military ally and former colony, despite the scrapping of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA).

AH-1Z attack helicopter
(photo credit to owner)

Certain groups are blocking such sale arguing that the country has a spotty human rights record under its current President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.

Human Rights Watch said the US Congress should “block or delay” sales of almost $2 billion in attack helicopters and munitions to Manila “until the government adopts major reforms to end military abuses and hold those responsible to account,” adding that the Philippine military has a “deeply rooted culture of impunity.”

Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate 
also slams the possible sale of the attack helicopters citing the expenses could have been diverted to COVID-19 expenses, rather to buy “war and killing machines like attack helicopters.”.

The PH embassy in a statement said the Philippines’ defense modernization program has been pushed not only by the Duterte administration but also by previous Presidents.

(photo credit to owner)

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Report from PDI

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