International People’s Tribunal convicts Duterte of human rights violations
Human rights activist Beth Dollaga was an observer at the International People’s Tribunal in Brussels, Belgium, where Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte was found guilty of human rights violations in the country.
Dollaga, together with other human rights advocates, submitted a copy of the IPT verdict at the Philippine consulate in Vancouver.
But they were not given a chance to meet with any of its officials.
“As a human being, it makes you feel outraged of whats happening and it’s only when you see a government that should be protecting its people, they’re the one who actually trample these rights, you feel outraged and feel compelled to do something.”
“We hope this is not a new relationship where the Consulate’s gonna pretend that there’s not a problem because we know there is. People in the Philippines have been organizing around these issues for decades, many of us non-Filipinos have been concerned about the situation, and have seen situation on the ground,” said Aiyanas Ormond.
Malacanang has dismissed the verdict, calling the IPT a sham.
Still, these advocates are optimistic IPT’s verdict will be forwarded to international criminal courts who can look deeper into the issue.
The tribunal conducted hearings early September, where 31 people testified against the Duterte administration’s war on drugs and the martial law declaration in Mindanao.
With the verdict, they hope to draw continuous international attention on the alleged abuses of the current administration.