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Motion for a resolution - B8-0202/2018Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on the Philippines

17.4.2018 - (2018/2662(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 135 of the Rules of Procedure

Victor Boştinaru, Elena Valenciano, Soraya Post, Neena Gill on behalf of the S&D Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-0198/2018

Procedure : 2018/2662(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected :  
Texts tabled :
Texts adopted :


European Parliament resolution on the Philippines


The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its previous resolutions on the situation in the Philippines, in particular those of 15 September 2016 and 15 March 2017

–  having regard to the statements by the EU Delegation and the spokesperson of the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (VP/HR),

-   having regard to the Press Release of the European Parliament of the 23 February 2018, ‘keeping Senator De Lima in prison without charge is unacceptable’

-   having regard to the joint staff working document on the EU Special Incentive arrangement for sustainable development and good governance (GSP+) assessment of the Philippines covering the period 2016-2017, of the 19th January 2018

-   having regard to the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement between the European Union and the Republic of the Philippines, which entered into force on the 1st March 2018

–  having regard to the status of the Philippines as a founding member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN),

-   having regard to the Press statement of the ASEAN-EU commemorative summit on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the establishment of ASEAN-EU dialogue relations; and to the ASEAN-EU Plan of Action (2018-2022)

-  having regard to the 2nd ASEAN-EU Policy Dialogue on human rights, 29th November 2017

-  Having regard the declarations of the High Commissioner of the United Nations Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, regarding the accusations by the government of the Philippines of terrorism activities by the Special Rapporteur of the UN for Indigenous People and other human rights defenders

-   having regard to the Universal Periodic Review, third cycle report, May 2017

–  having regard to the EU Guidelines on Human Rights,

–  having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948,

–  having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR),

–  having regard to Rules 135(5) and 123(4) of its Rules of Procedure



A.  whereas the Philippines and the EU have longstanding diplomatic, economic, cultural and political relations; whereas democracy, rule of law, human rights and dialogue with civil society organisations have always been an important part of the bilateral talks between the EU and the Philippines;

B. whereas the Philippines is a beneficiary of the European Union’s Generalised Scheme of Preferences plus (GSP+) ;

C. whereas since 1 July 2016, over 12,000 people, including women and children in the Philippines have been reportedly killed in an ongoing campaign against drugs, internationally proclaimed as President Duterte’s ‘war on drugs’; whereas President Duterte has vowed to continue his anti-drug campaign until the end of the presidential term in 2022;

D. whereas thousands of the extra judicial killings, children included, were reportedly committed by police and state actors;

E. whereas on the 8th February 2018, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) launched a preliminary examination into the allegations of crimes against humanity in the context of the ‘war on drugs’ killings’ in the Philippines;

F. whereas in March 2018 President Duterte withdrew the Philippines from the International Criminal Court’s Rome Statute;

G.  Whereas Philippines ranks amongst the worst countries in terms of corruption in the Corruption Ranking published annually by Transparency International;

H. whereas there is an increasingly shrinking space for civil society; whereas human rights defenders are reportedly facing an increasingly hostile environment in the Philippines;

I. whereas in October 2017 Mr Giacomo Filibeck, a senior representative of a European political party visited civil society and opposition political parties’ representatives; whereas Mr Giacomo Filibeck denounced publicly President Duterte’s anti-drug campaign; Whereas on the 15th of April 2018 Mr Filibeck was denied entry to the Philippines upon arrival, detained and subsequently forcibly deported from the country on the grounds of ‘illegal political activities´;

J. whereas in March 2018, the Government of the Philippines filed a legal petition seeking the declaration of a number of organizations, associations and persons as terrorists and outlaws pursuant to the National Security Act of 2007; whereas the list targets over 600 individuals and includes the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, as well as Mrs Joan Carling (co-convener of the Indigenous Peoples Majors Group for Sustainable Development) and several other indigenous human rights defenders from across the country;

K.  whereas Ms. Tauli-Corpuz has spoken out last December against some of President Duterte’s policies, namely the forced displacement and killings of indigenous peoples in the south of the country; whereas In 2017, the Philippines was the most dangerous country in Asia for environmental defenders, with a record of 41 murders;

L. whereas perceived critics of the Duterte administration are targeted by the government; whereas there are increasing concerns about cases of extra judicial killings, harassment , disappearance, threats and killings of human rights defenders;

M. whereas Leila M. de Lima of the Philippines, a staunch critic of President Duterte, was arrested and detained on the 24th February 2017 on politically motivated drug charges; whereas more than one year later, Senator De Lima remains arbitrarily detained without due judicial process;


N whereas President Duterte’s has made a number of derogatory and demeaning statements about women; where in a speech given in February to over 200 former communist soldiers, the president gave a directive to shoot female guerrilla fighters in their genitals;


1. Condemns all extrajudicial killings and violence, particularly of children; expresses support to the families and friends of the victims; calls on the Philippines to immediately stop all extra judicial killings, enforced disappearances and any incitement to commit such killings;

2.  Notes the government’s recent initiatives to ensure a more unified and integrated approach to anti-drug efforts based on enforcement, justice, advocacy and rehabilitation and integration; Invites the government to adopt specific anti-violent policies; Stresses that the authorities of the Philippines must lead its combat against illicit drugs with a focus on public health and in full compliance with due process, in line with national and international law;

3. Welcomes the Senate Resolution 516 filed on September 25th in the Philippines urging the authorities to “undertake the necessary steps to stop the spate of killings, especially of our children.”; Calls on the Philippines to guarantee the full implementation of all the necessary measures to protect children, as in accordance with its Constitution and international obligations;

4. Welcomes the initiative of the ICC to inquire into the allegations of crimes against humanity in the context of the killings of the ‘war on drugs’;

5. Deeply regrets the decision of the Philippines to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC) Statute; Requests the Philippines to reconsider this decision; Notes the jurisdiction of the ICC to continue its preliminary investigation against the Philippines; Supports the role of the ICC and its capacity to prosecute any international crimes committed while the Philippines was still an ICC members; Calls on the authorities in the Philippines to fully and unconditionally cooperate with the ICC;

6. Urges the government of the Philippines to ensure prompt, effective, impartial and transparent investigations of all the extrajudicial executions and other human rights violations committed in the context of anti-drug operations and to bring all those responsible to justice, including before the ICC; In the absence thereof, calls on the EU and its member states to support the creation of a United Nations-led investigation for the facilitation of accountability;

7. Is alarmed about increasing levels of corruption under the current Philippine administration; calls on the Philippine authorities to step up efforts to effectively tackle corruption; underscores the importance of respecting fundamental principles of democracy and rule of law in this respect;

8. Is concerned about the increasing hostility, violence and harassment against human rights defenders; Urges the Philippines to immediately remove the names of human rights defenders from the list of alleged terrorists, particularly of the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Victoria Tauli-Corpuz and Mrs Joan Carling; Welcomes the declarations of the High Commissioner of the United Nations Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein expressing that  it is unacceptable that a representative of the UN, that works on behalf of the international community, might be treated as a terrorist;

9.   Calls on the European Commission to express its sound reproach for these baseless terrorism allegations, to raise concern for this situation at the international level,  and to call on to the Philippine Government to ensure the physical safety of the persons listed in the petition;

10. Stresses that human rights defenders have a legitimate role to play in ensuring peace, justice and democracy; Calls for an end to their harassment and for the Philippines to ensure that they are able to carry out their legitimate activities without any hindrance and fear of reprisals;

11. Deplores all politically motivated detentions and deportations of foreign nationals; calls on the authorities of the Philippines to ensure the freedom of expression of all persons, including foreign nationals on the territory of the country; urges the Philippines to remove the names of perceived critics of President Duterte’s policies, including the name of Mr Giacomo Filibeck, from its blacklist;

12. Reiterates its call on the authorities of the Philippines to release Senator Leila M. De Lima and to provide her with adequate security and sanitary conditions whilst in detention; further reiterates its call to guarantee a fair trial and to drop all politically motivated charges against her;

13.Strongly condemns President Duterte’s demeaning and misogynist statements about women, notably women fighters; Reminds the President that encouraging state forces to commit sexual violence during armed conflict, is in violation of international humanitarian law; Calls on the President to treat women with respect and to refrain from inciting violence against women;

14. Calls on all regional actors to engage with Philippines in order to ensure they abide by rule of law;

15. Reminds the authorities of the Philippines of its obligations under international law, the GSP+ scheme and the PCA, notably with regards to human rights and of the consequences of failure to comply; Stresses that, while the progress in the implementation of the GSP+ conventions is largely positive, strong concerns remain around human rights violations related to the war on drugs; In this respect reminds its previous resolution on Philippines of 16 March 2017 and calls on the Commission to consider whether to initiate the procedure which could lead to the temporary withdrawal of the GSP+ preferences as foreseen in Article 19.1(a) "in case of serious and systematic violation of principles" laid down in the core human rights conventions listed in the GSP Regulation; Urges the EU to use all available instruments to assist the Government of the Philippines in respecting its international human rights obligations;

16. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Government and Parliament of the Philippines, the Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the Council, the Commission, the parliaments and governments of the Member States, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the governments of the ASEAN Member States.











Last updated: 17 April 2018
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