CHR spokesperson Jacqueline de Guia on Monday also expressed gratitude to Fox, who left last weekend following the expiration of her temporary visitor visa.
Boy Santos
Respect rights of foreigners, CHR tells government
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - November 7, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Days after the departure of Australian missionary Patricia Fox, the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) is reiterating its call on the government to respect the rights of all people, including foreigners.

CHR spokesperson Jacqueline de Guia on Monday also expressed gratitude to Fox, who left last weekend following the expiration of her temporary visitor visa.

“As a fellow human rights defender, we recognize with gratitude the dedication of Sister Patricia Fox to the human rights cause in the Philippines, especially for our farmers, laborers and the urban poor,” said De Guia.

“Founded on the universality of human rights, being a foreign national did not prevent her from dedicating almost three decades of her life addressing, within her means, an array of injustices and violations against the rights of the most vulnerable and marginalized in our country,” she added.

The Duterte administration had moved for the nun’s deportation, claiming she has violated restrictions on foreign nationals from participating in political events. Fox was accused of taking part in a rally supporting laborers in Davao City.

The CHR said the move to deport Fox violated her right to due process, noting that the Bureau of Immigration arbitrarily forfeited Fox’s missionary visa last April after she was invited and taken into custody without proper charges.

“The commission continues to remind the government of its human rights obligations to all persons in the country, Filipino or otherwise, in line with the human rights conventions it has accepted in the interest of upholding the dignity of all,” De Guia said in her statement on Monday.

She previously said that there should be a “balance between protecting the human rights of all and the interest of the nation.”

CHR chairman Chito Gascon earlier said they would review the immigration guidelines banning foreigners from taking part in protests to determine if such restriction violates their freedom to peacefully assemble.

COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS PATRICIA FOX
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