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Promotion of military officials with rights violations leads to impunity — US advocacy group

The Ecumenical Advocacy Network on the Philippines (EANP) has just published the report, “The Path to Promotion in the Armed Forces Philippines: Vilification Campaigns, Human Rights Abuses, and Impunity”.

The document describes how several top general officers who have led units that are at the center of widespread human rights violations, in some cases in charge of units that committed abuses, were rewarded with promotions by President Aquino in 2014.  Each were promoted to key command positions to head up combined Infantry and Air Force Divisions, where troops under their command have continued to engage in gross violations of human rights of both individual civilians and local communities more generally, or otherwise engaged in activities with a flagrant disregard for fundamental human rights of those in the area of their operations.

This has serious implications for continuing military assistance to the Armed Forces Philippines (AFP).  Since 2008, The US Government has imposed human rights conditions on Foreign Military Financing (FMF) in response to the escalation of extra-judicial executions, enforced disappearances, and torture committed by members of the AFP or security forces under their command.  For fiscal year 2015,  one of the conditions directs that funds under Foreign Military Financing Program should only be obligated for assistance for the Philippine Army if the Government of the Philippines is implementing a policy of promoting army personnel who demonstrate professionalism and respect for human rights. The promotion of military officers who commit  human rights violations contradicts that condition.

The report describes four case studies describing in detail how each has risen to leadership through their service in units responsible for a campaign of extra-judicial killings, disappearances and illegal detentions.

For more information, contact the following EANP members:
Brian Campbell, [email protected], (202) 701-3021
Paul Bloom, [email protected], (651) 646-1985
Tim McGloin, [email protected], 919-475-0725

Ecumenical Advocacy Network on the Philippines
P.O. Box 51844
Durham, NC 27717
email:  [email protected]
Ph:  919-475-0725, 651-646-1985

[email protected]

Alliance for the Advancement of People’s Rights
2nd Flr. Erythrina Building
#1 Maaralin corner Matatag Streets
Central District, Diliman
Quezon City, PHILIPPINES 1101
Telefax: (+63 2) 4354146

KARAPATAN is an alliance of human rights organizations and programs, human rights desks and committees of people’s organizations, and individual advocates committed to the defense and promotion of people’s rights and civil liberties.  It monitors and documents cases of human rights violations, assists and defends victims and conducts education, training and campaign. 

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