Hold Duterte Accountable for Human Rights Violations, Says Labor Rights Group

December 10, 2020

The Center for Trade Union and Human Rights (CTUHR) strongly stands in solidarity with the peoples of the world on the commemoration of the International Human Rights Day on December 10, 2020. On this day, the world marks the adoption of the 1998 United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Defenders which served as a hallmark of unity for the people to fight against repression.

“The Philippines, during this pandemic, is not only under a public health crisis. The Duterte government has also placed the country under a human rights crisis. In the midst of all the challenges brought about by the pandemic, calamities and the global economic recession, the Duterte government opted to exert its funds, time and energy to wage an all-out war against activists and rights defenders,” CTUHR said in a statement. 

The passage of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 and the funding of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) has aggravated the human rights violations perpetrated by the Duterte administration. Red-tagging, illegal arrests and even extrajudicial killings even heightened amid the pandemic, in the administration’s attempt to cover up its criminal neglect of the people’s rights and clamor for jobs, government assistance and a medical solution to the pandemic. At least 8 activists and staunch government critics have been killed during this pandemic, including labor rights defenders Carlito Badion and Jose Jerry Catalogo. 

CTUHR also underscored the from endless attacks on labor and human rights. State forces quell workers’ peaceful protests, vilify and red-tag unionists and labor rights defenders, arrest trade union organizers and even kill staunch labor leaders. The Center has recorded 50 killings among workers, agriworkers and labor rights defenders under the Duterte regime. 

“We call on the workers and the people to unite and resist the attacks of this tyrannical regime.. Now, more than ever, our solidarity is crucial to hold Duterte accountable and stop these attacks on our fundamental rights. Justice for all victims of human rights violations!” CTUHR ended.