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Philippines: Homicide

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 15th February 2017.

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Photo of Catherine West Catherine West Shadow Minister (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with his Filipino counterpart on extra-judicial killings in that country.

Photo of Alok Sharma Alok Sharma The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

We are concerned by the rising death toll associated with the "war on illegal drugs" in the Philippines. We raised this issue at the last session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva in October. Most recently, I discussed our concerns with a range of interlocutors, including senior Government Ministers, during my visit to the Philippines in December. During that visit, I stressed the importance of finding alternative methods for reducing the harm caused by illegal drugs, such as through rehabilitation programmes. I offered UK support to achieve this goal. We will continue to urge the Philippine Government to take up this offer and we will continue to monitor events closely.

Our view on the importance of the rule of law and due legal process is clear, consistent and well known in the Philippines. Our Embassy in Manila works closely with our EU partners and the UN in the Philippines on these issues, including through frequent contact with human rights groups.

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