Duterte, do not sign Anti-Terror bill - UN rights chief

Duterte, do not sign Anti-Terror bill - UN rights chief

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is in the global stage again, sadly it s not for all the good reasons we are all hoping it to be.

United Nations’(UN) human rights chief advised the Philippine President against signing the controversial anti-terrorism bill into law.

During the 44th regular session of the UN Human Rights Council, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, the controversial measure which is already in Malacanang just waiting for it to be signed before it can be a law ““heightens our concerns about the blurring of important distinctions between criticism, criminality and terrorism.”
President Rodrigo Duterte and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet
(photo credit to owner)

“Human rights defenders are routinely smeared as terrorists, enemies of the State and even viruses akin to COVID-19,” Bachelet said.
The UN Human Rights official notes that 248 human rights defenders, lawyers, journalists and trade unionists have been killed from 2015 to 2019.
“The law could have a further chilling effect on human rights and humanitarian work, hindering support to vulnerable and marginalized communities,” Bacehelet said.

“So I would urge the President to refrain from signing the law, and to initiate a broad-based consultation process to draft legislation that can effectively prevent and counter violent extremism – but which contains some safeguards to prevent its misuse against people engaged in peaceful criticism and advocacy,” she said.
Bachelet said her office is more than welcome to assist the Philippine President for such review.

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Report from CNN Philippines

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