THE Philippines on Wedneday night scored the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights for having severely mischaracterized the situation in the Philippines to the Human Rights Council.
Foreign Secretary Alan Peter S. Cayetano and Philippine Deputy Permanent Representative Maria Teresa Almojuela separately called out United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein for criticizing the Philippine Government’s human rights record.
Philippine officials said the Commissioner’s report on the conduct of anti-drug operations was deliberate misinformation.
“The Philippines has provided the Human Rights Council with all the facts regarding the campaign against illegal drugs in our report to the Third Cycle of the Universal Periodic Review [UPR] in May 2017,” Cayetano said.
He said “the Commissioner’s report would have been balanced and accurate had he considered the information that we provided, instead of just relying on uncorroborated information.”
Cayetano made the statement even as he reiterated the commitment of the Philippines to continue constructively engaging the UN Human Rights Council.
“The Philippines has actively participated in the Universal Periodic Review process, and was one of the first countries to undergo the review in 2008, having championed the establishment of the UPR process under the UN Human Rights Council Mechanism,” Cayetano stated.
According to the Secretary, the report he provided during the UPR Periodic Review emphasized President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive to fight the drug problem by all means that the law allows.
“The anti-illegal drug campaign should follow approved protocols to ensure the protection of human rights, and that any erring law enforcement agent would be investigated and prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” said the Secretary.