PHILIPPINES

In the context of the UPR, Amnesty International has made the following recommendations to the Philippines 

 

Normative and institutional framework: 

  • Revoke Executive Order No. 546 on police support for the military in counter-insurgency operations;
  • Ensure that the Enforced or Involuntary Disappearance Act (Senate Bill 2817) and the Reproductive Health Bill (Senate Bill 286) are enacted and implemented without delay;
  • Develop and implement a National Human Rights Action Plan immediately.
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    Unlawful killings and enforced disappearances: 

  • Provide sufficient resources to bodies, particularly the Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation, to ensure that allegations of politically-motivated unlawful killings and enforced disappearances are investigated promptly, independently, impartially and effectively. Cases of human rights violations should be brought before civilian courts in proceedings which meet international standards of fairness;
  • Provide sufficient resources to the Department of Justice, particularly to government prosecutors, to ensure that cases involving human rights violations are vigorously prosecuted;
  • Ratify the International Convention on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance and enact domestic legislation to penalize enforced disappearance as defined in that Convention.
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    Torture and other ill-treatment: 

  • Implement recommendations by the Committee Against Torture in 2009, including taking immediate steps to prevent acts of torture and ill-treatment; announcing a policy of total elimination of torture and ill-treatment by State officials; and ensuring that all allegations of torture and ill-treatment are investigated promptly, effectively and impartially, and the perpetrators brought to justice;
  • Ratify the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, and to establish an independent, professional and well-resourced National Preventive Mechanism.
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    Militias and private armed groups: 

  • Ensure that the military exercises full control over all state-sponsored militias and that the Department of National Defense defines their purpose, chain of command and accountability mechanisms; or disarm and disband them;
  • Disarm and disband private armies;
  • Make public the findings of the Independent Commission against Private Armies and take decisive action to penalize state officials that continue to use private armies.
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    Witness protection: 

  • Establish and provide resources, under the Commission on Human Rights, for a specialized program for witness and victim protection, including for families of victims, in cases involving serious human rights violations, particularly when the alleged perpetrators are soldiers, police or state officials.
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    Maternal health and sexual and reproductive rights: 

  • Ensure that a comprehensive reproductive health education program is included in the national school curriculum. Age-appropriate materials should be developed so that adolescents, regardless of their level of education or marital status, can fully access information on the prevention of unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases;
  • Remove barriers in access to health care services and to guarantee equitable distribution of health facilities, services and resources, including safe contraception and other reproductive health services and information.
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    Philippines: Amnesty International's submission to the UN Universal Periodic Review