Some of you may have seen the news below (as it came out yesterday), but we wanted to put together a statement. Trust this one below is fine – if someone can post to the website I will send out to other groups in Philippines & internationally …
CHRP condemns Philippines becoming world’s deadliest country for environmental activists
31 July 2019
Global Witness have just released their new report on the human rights situation of environmental defenders in 2018. Although the Philippines has consistently ranked as the deadliest country to be an environmental activist in Asia for the first time it has overtaken Brazil to rank as the most dangerous in the world.
The Campaign for Human Rights in the Philippines expresses our outrage that the Philippines had the highest number of killings of any country this year, with at least 30 defenders murdered. For those who have followed this issue for years as we have this comes as no surprise, but it is still deeply saddening, and indicative of the worsening of the situation that confront activists in the country. President Rodrigo
Duterte’s government has ramped up its campaign of “red-tagging” rights activists, including land and
environmental defenders, as communist sympathisers or terrorists.
The Global Witness report, called ‘Enemies of the State’, emphasises that deadly violence is only the most visible of countless threats that defenders face. The criminalisation of activists is rife, and as Global Witness notes “the failure of many governments and companies to act responsibly, ethically or even legally is a major driving force behind crimes committed against land and environment defenders.”
We stand in solidarity with those land and environmental rights defenders, and call for an end to the killings and harassment of those who are trying to protect our environment.
Global Witness report – https://www.globalwitness.org/en-gb/campaigns/environmental-activists/enemies-state/
Press report – https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jul/30/philippines-deadliest-country-defenders-environment-global-witness