17 June 2019, 3:00 PM

Urgent debate on the current racially-inspired human rights violations, systemic racism, police brutality and the violence against peaceful protest

Speaking time: 2.5 minutes

As a party to the ICERD, the Philippines actively supports UN initiatives to combat racism and prevent its occurrence.

We welcome this urgent debate as it affirms the consonance of the Human Rights Council with communities across nations painfully awakened by recent incidents to the reality that much remains to be done in eliminating all forms and practice of discrimination on the basis of race. There are structural issues to address, including, regrettably, vestiges of colonialism in parts of the world.

The Council has considered reports from Treaty Bodies and Special Procedures on systemic racism and xenophobia especially in developed states involving people of African descent. Through the UPR process, States have engaged constructively to recommend measures at the national level to address this issue.

The Philippines sees the value of evidence-based monitoring, evaluation and review systems, embedded in the police force and relevant oversight bodies, in ensuring that there is no systemic or institutionally-sanctioned racism or use of excessive force in law enforcement. Consistent with its human rights-based policing and its zero-tolerance policy for impunity, the Philippine National Police has embarked on putting in place a real-time data recording and analysis system for its 205,000 officers in 1,766 police stations nationwide. This monitoring tool will use real-time data on complaints of human rights violations and status of investigations and cases to enable the police force to respond with timely interventions and better protect human rights and prevent violations.

We recognize the role of the Council, as well as Treaty Bodies and the OHCHR in fully mainstreaming human rights in the work of law enforcers and security authorities. We note that in its 2019 Annual Report, the OHCHR’s technical cooperation with law enforcers comprised a significant part of its work primarily in developing countries. We highly encourage the consideration of similar projects to address systemic racism and structural discrimination and police brutality involving people of African descent in various countries where these are occurring.

Thank you, Madam President. END.