PH lifts suspension on loan deals with 18 states backing Iceland resolution
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine government has lifted the suspension on loan and grant agreements with countries that backed the United Nations Human Rights Council resolution on drug war killings.
A February 27-dated memorandum seen by Rappler, and prepared by the Office of the Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, informed all department secretaries and head of agencies about the lifting of the suspension.
In August 2019, the Philippines suspended negotiations and signing of all loan and grant agreements with the 18 states that co-sponsored and voted in favor of the Iceland-backed resolution.
"Please be informed that such directive is hereby lifted, effective immediately," said the memorandum signed by Medialdea.
"It is understood, however, that all necessary approvals, authorities and clearances, as required by relevant laws, rules, and regulations should first be obtained prior to actual negotiations and conclusions of any agreement," Medialdea added.
The countries that voted in favor of the resolution were Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Fiji, Iceland, Italy, Mexico, Peru, Slovakia, Spain, Ukraine, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and Uruguay. (READ: Meet PH’s new friends: U.N.-member countries that voted vs human rights resolution)
Malacañang had strongly condemned the UNHRC resolution for being "grotesquely one-sided, outrageously narrow, and maliciously partisan." (READ: Duterte gov't allows 'drug war' deaths to go unsolved)
Official government data said that over 5,000 people have been killed in the administration's campaign against illegal drugs. But human rights groups estimated the death toll to be as high as 27,000-30,000, including victims of vigilante-style killings. – Rappler.com