We, human rights defenders and civil society organizations (CSOs) working for the defense and protection of human rights, gathered in Quezon City, Philippines, during the Freedom of Expression Conference, FreeXP.con organized by the Human Rights Online Philippines (HRonlinePH) on 1-2 December 2017;
Statement: Balay encourages President Rodrigo Duterte to keep the flames of hope burning in the search for peace
In a speech on Friday, May 5, before police officers in Parang, Maguindanao, President Rodrigo R. Duterte said he was “at a loss” and felt “a bit pessimistic” about the prospects for peace with Moro rebels owing to their supposedly continued “squabbling.”
The President further said he was worried nothing can come out of the process which his administration expanded to include various Moro stakeholders, and tried to engage both the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) with a common Bangsamoro agenda consistent with each group’s peace pact with government.
The United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner issued an open letter last March 27 expressing its grave concern over the reimposition of death penalty in the country. The letter signed by the Human Rights Committee Chairperson Yuji Isawara was addressed to Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations Maria Teresa Almojuela and Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III.