Roque hits rights group over black ops

The Philippine Star
Roque hits rights group over black ops
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque holds a press conference in this May 4, 2021 photo.
Presidential Communications Operations Office

MANILA, Philippines — UniTeam senatorial candidate Harry Roque has lambasted a rights organization with close ties to local groups declared as terrorists by western countries for its relentless character assassination of President Duterte and himself.

Roque said he does not know which is more preposterous, his accusers or the accusation that he violated human rights.

“What alleged crimes against humanity did I exactly commit under domestic and international laws?” Roque asked the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP).

Roque, the first Asian admitted to practice before the International Criminal Court added, “I’m curious to hear from the legal fronts of the Communist Party of the Philippines and New People’s Army (CPP-NPA).”

The CPP and NPA are considered foreign terrorist organizations by the United States, European Union, Australia, the United Kingdom and New Zealand.

Roque challenged the rights coalition to legally support their imputation of crimes against humanity on him and the President or face the ramifications of their black propaganda.

Recently, Duterte urged the public to dismiss the party-list group Bayan Muna in the May elections. The group is part of the militant Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan), a founding member of the ICHRP.

“They have preposterously accused me as part of the government’s infrastructure of terror. On the contrary, they seem to be directly in cahoots with terrorist groups,” Roque said.

Roque said his record as a rights advocate in the legal profession, academe, legislature and parliament of the streets would bear scrutiny.

“I can always defend my innocence in any court across the globe,” said Roque, who was admitted to practice before the United Nations War Crimes Tribunal for Rwanda in 2004.

The former presidential spokesman secured convictions for the murderers of 19 journalists in the Maguindanao massacre and the American killer of LGBTQ+ member Jennifer Laude.

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