Extrajudicial killings are inconsistent with the “straight path” of PNoy.It must stop now!
The killing of Dutch missionary Willem Geertman, in broad daylight, is a gravely serious assault on human rights. It reflects the failure of the state to protect the most basic of all human rights – the right to life.
It highlights the apparent continuing impunity in post-Arroyo administration where killings of journalists and those suspected of being sympathetic to the armed left movement, even if they are civilians, continue.
As an advocate of basic human rights, the Food-First Information and Action Network (FIAN), condemns in the strongest terms this latest act of violence. These killings are inconsistent with the “straight policy direction” of Benigno Aquino III who time and again declared that his administration will correct the wrongs of the previous government. This policy, however, must go beyond the issue of corruption. Equally important is for the Aquino administration to uphold human rights and resolve the extra-judicial killings during the Arroyo administration.
Two years into his term, however, the Aquino administration has not only failed to resolve extra-judicial killings, as reported by many local and international human rights groups but has steadfastly de-emphasized human rights by studiously remaining silent on the issue.
The continuing failure of the government to arrest former General Jovito Palparan, who was believed to have masterminded many killings under the Arroyo administration, highlights failure to resolve human rights violations. Worse, the killing of Dutch missionary Geertman gives us reasons to believe that extra-judicial killings continue with impunity under the Aquino administration.
We remind the President of the Philippines that the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva has condemned extra-judicial killings in the Philippines and that 69 countries recommended that the government take measures to stop them. FIAN Philippines welcomes the creation of a special investigation group to probe Geertman’s murder. We urge for the immediate arrest and prosecution of those responsible in order to serve justice to the victim, his family, and Filipinos whom he has served faithfully for over four decades.
It is in this regard that we would like to call on the Aquino government to swiftly resolve the killing of Geertman and bring the perpetrators to justice. His pronouncement of “Tuwid na Daan” or “Straight Path” rings hollow in the face of continuing extra-judicial killings. The killings must be stopped and they must be stopped now.
Aurea G. Miclat-Teves
FIAN Philippines President
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