United Nations official for human rights condemned anew the supposed rights violations under President Rodrigo Duterte’s government.
In his opening speech at the Human Rights Council 36th session on September 11, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, tagged the Philippines as among the countries with human rights issues.
Zeid condemned the killing of Grade 11 student Kian Loyd delos Santos, whose death sparked public anger over the conduct of Duterte’s bloody war on drugs.
According to cops, Delos Santos violently resisted arrest, prompting them to return fire. But this claim had been questioned by eyewitness accounts and a CCTV footage showing Delos Santos being dragged by plainclothes policemen to a place where his dead body was later found.
“The recent killing of a schoolboy who was dragged into an alley and shot in the head by plains-clothed policeman on August 16 was described by the Minister of Justice as ‘an isolated case’. However, suspicion of extrajudicial killings has now become so widespread that the initials EJK have reportedly become a verb in some communities – as in ‘he was EJKed’,” he said.
“Two days after hundreds of people turned out for the teenager’s funeral, the President again told police they would not be punished for killing suspects who resist arrest. This lack of respect for the due process rights of all Filipinos is appalling,” he also said.
Zeid stressed that this is “yet another blow to his country’s reputation and his people’s rights.”