SPEAKING before the members of the Brussels parliament, human rights organizations under Philippine UPR Watch presented the worsening human rights situation in the Philippines as a result of government’s intensified counter-insurgency operation. The group highlighted the ongoing aerial bombardments of the Philippine army in Batangas Province which reportedly resulted to the killing of a minor and forcible evacuations of hundreds of families.
“As we speak before you, human rights violations continue to occur in the Philippines. In Batangas, a few kilometers away from the nation’s capital, hundreds of families were reportedly displaced while a minor died due to the ongoing aerial bombardments of the military,” said National Union of People’s Lawyers secretary general Atty. Ephraim Cortez, who also co-heads the delegation of Philippine UPR Watch that recently attended the 36th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland.
“We are very much alarmed over the incidents of aerial bombings in the country. Apparently, the government is hell-bent on using aerial strikes as part of its counter-insurgency operations in the peasant and minority communities across the country. We’ve seen this kind of scenario during the Marawi crisis, and it is undeniable that the civilians, especially women and children, are the most affected,” stressed Cortez adding that military airstrikes also took place in Magpet, North Cotabato last Sept. 20. - Karapatan
Published in the SunStar Cebu newspaper on October 02, 2017.
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