HWG wants presidential proclamation to officially end war on drugs

The Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Wednesday urged the Philippine government to issue a presidential proclamation to officially end the President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

Commission on Human Rights reported how the children of those who died during the war against drugs suffered.

Philippine National Police reported that 5,601 people were killed in “legitimate anti-drug operations,” where the suspects allegedly fought back, so police were forced to shoot them dead.

The Commission on Human Rights, however, estimated more than 27,000 deaths in the Philippines related to the war on drugs, which is not included in the PNP’s report. These were those killed by unidentified gunmen.

HRW also called on the government to “investigate and prosecute alleged perpetrators, including law enforcement personnel, credibly implicated in extrajudicial killings and other abuses committed” because of the unreported cases of killings in the country.

The government should “promptly and fairly” indemnify the families of victims, the HRW also recommended.

The group also asked Duterte’s administration to “fully cooperate with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, which was directed by the UN Human Rights Council in a July 2019 resolution to prepare a report on the human rights situation in the Philippines.”

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The HRW also urged bodies of the United States to “strongly advocate” to end policies supporting the and to push the government to hold perpetrators of violence accountable.

“The UN Human Rights Council should establish an independent international investigative mechanism into extrajudicial killings and other violations committed in the context of the ‘war on drugs’ since June 2016,” it said.

HRW also called on United Nations bodies to give political, technical, and financial support for the Commission on Human Rights.

Meanwhile, the human rights group also asked the UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) to prioritize children of drug war victims in its programs such as psychological support and livelihood.

Human Rights Watch is an international non-governmental organization, headquartered in City, that conducts research and advocacy on human rights.