MANILA, May 12 (PNA) — The Philippinesâ€™ anti-torture campaign has been hailed as a model by a regional human rights body and a leading global anti-torture organization, according to the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).
DILG Undersecretary Peter Irving C. Corvera, head of the Philippine delegation to the 57th session of the United Nations Committee Against Torture (CAT) in Geneva, said the Philippines has been cited by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Inter-governmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) and by the Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT).
Corvera said he is proud of the government’s latest achievement which addresses the torture and ill-treatment incidents with seriousness and firm resolve through its legal and institutional mechanisms.
â€œThe Philippines sees every opportunity to evaluate its human rights record as an opportunity for improvement,â€ said Corvera.
The DILG Undersecretary also said that the country adheres to the principle of inclusive participation in human rights promotion and protection, particularly with regard to anti-torture campaign.
In the 3rd periodic report of the Philippines, the efforts of the Philippine government were highlighted in implementing the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, which include the countryâ€™s Anti-Torture Campaign, the creation of an interagency committee monitoring the status of human rights violations including cases of torture, and the crafting of Philippine Human Rights Action Plan for 2012-2017.
The report also included the governmentâ€™s prioritization of capacity-building, and inter agency and multi-sector cooperation in advancing the anti-torture campaign, which involve police-military-church dialogues on human rights issues and conduct of community-based dialogues with civil society on human rights and concerns at the grassroots level.
Apart from Corvera, DILG Assistant Secretary Ester A. Aldana and CAT Focal Person General Doris Remedios-Dorigo were also present in the convention. Other senior officials with the Philippine delegation were Ambassador Cecilia B. Rebong, Justice Undersecretary Wendell L. Go, Chief State Counsel Ricardo V. Paras III, Sandiganbayan Presiding Justice Amparo Cabotaje-Tang, Presidential Legislative Liaison Office Undersecretary Bernardino E. Sayo, and Presidential Human Rights Committee Executive Director Severo S. Catura.
On Friday, the results of the bodyâ€™s observations on the Philippinesâ€™ torture record will be known as well as the review of the compliance of other countries â€“ France, Tunisia, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Israel. (PNA)