The Philippine Foreign Minister, Teodoro Locsin Jr., has said that “it is not worth it” to expect aid from countries that have questioned the “war on drugs” of the Philippine government and the reported Human Rights violations.
On Friday, the Philippine newspaper ‘Inquirer’ reported that the Philippine Presidential Palace had ordered the entire Government to suspend talks on aid from countries that supported a resolution of the UN Human Rights Council asking to investigate the situation of Human Rights in Philippines The presidential document is dated in August and would also affect loans from these countries.
A spokesman for President Rodrigo Duterte, Salvador Panelo, has denied that this order exists. “The president has not issued any order to suspend credits and negotiations with the 18 countries that voted in favor of the Iceland resolution,” he said.
The document would have been published on the Customs Office website and deleted a few hours later, the Philippine press reported on Saturday.
Locsin Jr. has confirmed in several messages on Twitter the existence of the memorandum, but has assured that it is “past water” and that the Philippines has “long been” refusing onerous offers of help “before Iceland’s resolution”.
The international aid “is not worth considering the amounts and terms and that the money goes mainly to the consultants,” he said on Twitter.
The Icelandic July resolution was supported by Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Fiji, Iceland, Italy, Mexico, Peru, Slovakia, Spain, Ukraine, United Kingdom and Uruguay. Japan abstained.
Duterte’s “war on drugs” has been settled since 2016 with nearly 6,000 suspected drug addicts and traffickers killed in police operations.