On the occasion of International Human rights Day and the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, the Movement Against Tyranny reiterates its firm stand for human rights and against the worsening tyranny of the Duterte regime.
These are dark days for human rights in the Philippines. We have a President who disdains the idea of human rights and relishes in bashing the cause and its defenders. Mr. Duterte has transformed into a fascist madman.
In recent weeks, Duterte and his government have gone overboard in putting our people's rights in peril. As he promised in his State of the Nation Address last July, the killings of suspected drug users and pushers are as brutal, chilling and relentless as ever, violating the victims right to life and due process. He now plans to organize a Duterte Death Squad that threatens to further expand the killing spree that now targets political dissenters, suspected rebels and rebel sympathizers, even priests and bishops.
Upon Duterte's request, Congress is expected to extend martial law in Mindanao even as he has called on the military to suppress “lawless violence” in the rebel strongholds in Luzon and the Visayas via Memorandum Order No. 32. With the peace talks abandoned by Duterte, we expect increased and intensified military operations, resulting in massive human rights atrocities.
Meanwhile, trumped up cases against his critics and dissenters are growing by the day. The victims include Senators Leila de Lima and Antonio Trillanes, congresswoman France Castro, former Chief Justice Lourdes Sereno, former lawmakers Satur Ocampo, Liza Maza, Rafael Mariano and Teddy Casiño, NDFP peace consultants Vicente Ladlad, Rafael Baylosis, Adel Silva and Rey Casambre, and hundreds of activists, community leaders and human rights defenders.
With Duterte having strengthened his hold over Congress and the Supreme Court, the next step might be to impose his brand of dictatorship, either through martial law, charter change or a revolutionary government. In this sense, the 2019 elections will be a battleground between the forces of democracy and dictatorship.
We call on our people to stand up, resist and fight the tyranny engulfing our nation.#