Germany, France ask Philippines to fight EJKs

Pia Lee-Brago - The Philippine Star
Germany, France ask Philippines to fight EJKs
Members of progressive groups from different sectors hold a protest at Liwasang Bonifacio in Manila to mark the 75th year of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights yesterday.
Edd Gumban

MANILA, Philippines — Marking Human Rights Day, France and Germany urged the Philippine government yesterday to “redouble” its efforts to ensure accountability and fight impunity with regard to extrajudicial killings that occurred in the war on drugs.

In a joint declaration on the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the embassies of France and Germany in Manila also urged the Philippine government to redouble efforts to “protect (environmental) human rights defenders, journalists and indigenous peoples; and to put an end to the practice of red-tagging.”

“France and Germany remain committed to human rights and the rule of law and wish to continue to strengthen their cooperation in this area,” the Declaration read. 

France and Germany will launch the “Franco-German Human Rights gathering” in the Philippines: a regular discussion inviting relevant actors in the field of human rights to exchange ideas and join forces to achieve the rights and fundamental freedoms of all human beings.

The embassies also cited Manila on its regained readiness to engage in a constructive manner with international partners on human rights, with 215 recommendations that the Philippines adopted within its latest Universal Periodic Review Cycle and the visits of several UN special rapporteurs are testament to this new openness.

The 75th anniversary of the UDHR, the embassies said, is a unique opportunity to reaffirm the universality and indivisibility of all human rights, their relevance in the face of current challenges, the necessary support for those who are first defenders, and the need to ensure respect for all rights through justice everywhere and for everyone by fighting against impunity.

Committed to the protection and promotion of all human rights, France and Germany commemorated the adoption of the United Nations UDHR which took place at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris on Dec. 10, 1948, in order to strongly recall its importance and relevance as an essential basis for the realization of the rights and fundamental freedoms of all human beings.

Based on the recognition of “the inherent dignity of all members of the human family and their equal and inalienable rights,” this declaration grants them to each individual, without distinction of skin color, sex, language and religion and without recourse to any other criteria.

“Advocating for the cause of human rights is not only a moral duty and an obligation of international law. This cause also serves the interests of all societies,” the embassies said. 

“Examples from around the world bear witness to this: where human rights are violated, peace and stability cannot be established in the long term. Conversely, when freedom and human dignity are protected, they appear to be (a) source of creativity and prosperity,” they added. — Janvic Mateo, Mark Ernest Villeza

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