Child advocacy group urges UN member-countries to support probe on rights violations in PH

For the investigation to push through, the UN must garner at least 24 votes from the 47 member states.

By ANNE MARXZE D. UMIL
Bulatlat.com

MANILA — A child advocacy group called on the members of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to support the call to conduct an independent probe on human rights violations in the Philippines.

This after a three-year-old girl named Myka Ulpina died during a reported buy-bust operation in Rodriguez, Rizal on June 30. According to the Children’s Rehabilitation Center (CRC), a non-government organization providing psycho-social help for children victims of human rights violation, Ulpina is the 58th child killed in government’s anti-illegal drug campaign.

The UNHRC is scheduled to hold its meeting first week of July to vote on this matter as UN experts have expressed their concern over the mounting reports of deteriorating human rights situation in the Philippines.

For the investigation to push through, the UN must garner at least 24 votes from the 47 member states.

At the opening of the 41st session of the UNHRC, UN High Commissioner on Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said that her office is “following the situation of human rights in the Philippines very closely.”

In a statement, CRC said the children victims of President Duterte’s so-called war on drugs were either collateral damage in crossfire during police operations or were implicated as alleged drug suspects without legal basis and documentation.

According to news reports, the police were targeting Ulpina’s father, Renato Dolofrina, who was also killed during the police operation.

“Moreover, tens of thousands of orphaned children and families continue to call for justice for the deaths and damages resulting from the so-called war on drugs,” the group said.

According to the Philippine National Police (PNP) there are over 5,000 alleged drug pushers and peddlers that were killed in anti-illegal drugs operations. However, independent reports from the media and other human rights groups show that there have been more than 20,000 victims since Duterte became president.

Aside from the children victims of the government’s “war-on-drugs,” there are also children being victimized by the implementation of martial law in Mindanao and the Memorandum Order No. 32, the group said.

CRC said there have been 11 minors who were killed and 33 who were illegally arrested and were subjected to torture and inhuman treatment.

There were also 79 schools which were forcibly closed and 42,823 victims affected by the use of schools, medical, and religious facilities for military purposes, the group said.

The group lambasted the government for not fulfilling its job to conduct prompt and full investigations into the said cases even with strong recommendations from international and independent local human rights experts.
It urged the UNHRC to make a “decisive move to independently investigate these cases and sanction the Duterte government and its state forces for the gross violations of human and children’s rights in the Philippines.”

“CRC believes that it is about time that the international community embodied by the UNHRC, along with local human rights advocates unite in urging accountability from the Duterte administration, and ensure that the bloodshed must come to an end,” the group said. (https://www.bulatlat.com)

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