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Extrajudicial Killings in the Philippines

November 29, 2006

Hong Kong Campaign for the Advancement of Human Rights and Peace in the Philippines (HKCAHRPP)

HKCAHRPP was formed in April 2005 because of the concern of organizations and individuals in Hong Kong about the killings in the Philippines. Our concern continues because the killings have continued. Today we thus gather again to protest against the human rights violations in the Philippines that are the worst since the Marcos era.

Although the government denies its involvement in these killings and gives a variety of reasons and motivations of others for these killings, we ask why are most of the victims critics of the government? How can masked men on motorcycles without license plates ride all over the countryside without being stopped? How can so many people be killed in broad daylight? How can people be killed a few hundred meters from a police station or army camp without being apprehended?

Regardless of who is behind the killings, the Philippine government has an international obligat

ion to protect the lives of its people. Its failure to protect the rights of the Filipino peoples, especially their right to life, indicates that agents of the government, i.e., the police and military, are either complicit in these deaths or the government is incompetent.

Because of the lack of effective action by the government, there is consequently a climate of impunity in the country, and the rule of law has been replaced by the rule of lawlessness.

If the government worked as hard to solve these killings as they do to deny they are involved or to discredit human rights groups or to appease the foreign business community, these killings would be reduced instead of continuing at such a high rate.

Now is the time for independent investigations into these killings.

Now is the time for enforcement of the country's witness protection law.

Now is the time for compensation for the victims.

Now is the time for the Philippine government to honor its pledge to invite officials from European governments to monitor the investigations of the killings in the Philippines and to help the government stop the killings.

Now is the time to end the killings in the Philippines.

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