Philippines: OMCT, the FIFDH and AI condemn the arrest of Filipino senator Leila de Lima
Geneva, January 24th, 2017 – The World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), the International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights (FIFDH) and Anesty International strongly object to the arrest of Philippine Senator Leila de Lima.
A former Minister of Justice, de Lima is scheduled to attend the Festival on March 18th, as part of a panel about the Philippines. Co-presented by OMCT and the Délégation Genève Ville Solidaire, the roundtable will discuss the current situation in the country.
One of the most vocal opponents to President Rodrigo Duterte’s deadly anti-drug crackdown, Sen. de Lima is the former President of the Philippines Commission for Human Hights. She was arrested on drug charges. She has professed her innocence.
For Isabelle Gattiker, the General Director of the Festival and Philippe Mottaz, the Forum’s Editorial Producer : « everything suggests that these accusations are completely unfounded and that the sole purpose of this arrest is to silence one of the most vocal opposition voices in the Philippines ». Amnesty International (AI) have already declared that they consider Senator de Lima a prisoner of conscience.
OMCT, AI, as well as the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, have in the past publicly denounced the deadly policies put in place by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. According to some NGOs, Philippine police could be guilty of crimes against humanity, acting under the direct orders of President Duterte. The President himself has boasted about having personally killed a number drug traffickers when he was mayor in Davao.
OMCT joins the FIFDH and Amnesty International in requesting that Leila de Lima be released at once.
Come watch the roundtable: The Philippines: A license to kill
Saturday March 18th at 8.30pm
Théâtre Pitoëff /Espace Pitoëff