[Statement] Joint statement on the International Week of the Disappeared – AFAD/FIND/iDEFEND


As this year’s International Week of the Disappeared begins, we call upon the Philippine Government to end enforced disappearances and bring to justice all perpetrators of this grave human rights violation.

Enforced Disappearance is a phenomenon that is inextricably intertwined with Extra-Judicial Killing and Torture. The recent spate of killings linked with this administration’s war on drugs may have put focus on the end result; the death of thousands of victims. However, reports of these killings have indicated that many victims, prior to being executed, were first abducted as well as tortured. The administration must be reminded that enforced disappearance and torture are against Philippine domestic laws (RA10353 and RA9745 respectively).

We commend the termination of the police officers behind the make-shift secret detention facility discovered in Manila Police Station 1, but we condemn the anti-poor, unscientific, and inhumane policies that have encouraged this widespread and systematic abuse of authority leading to grave human rights violations.

We also remind the administration to strongly consider the recommendations of several UN member states at the recently concluded UN Universal Periodic Review to ratify the Convention Against Enforced Disappearance. Special attention must be given to the fact that the Philippines has submitted 625 outstanding cases of enforced disappearance to the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearance.

Indeed, Enforced Disappearance is a global phenomenon that requires a global response. We stand in solidarity with all families of victims of enforced disappearance and extra-judicial killing, especially Latin American families who first commemorated the International Week of the Disappeared in 1981.

The Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD), the Families of Victims of Involuntary Disappearance (FIND), and the In Defense of Human Rights and Dignity Movement (iDefend) demand justice for all victims of enforced disappearance.

End impunity now! End Enforced Disappearance now!


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