By Alexis Romero and Patricia Viray
MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED 5:53 p.m.) — Malacañang Monday justified the Philippine government’s rejection of more than half of the recommendations it received during its third Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in Geneva, saying it is in line with the country’s independent foreign policy.
The Philippines has rejected 154 of 257 recommendations by the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) including allowing a UN special rapporteur Agnes Callamard to look into alleged extrajudicial killings, halting efforts to restore death penalty and lowering the age of criminal responsibility.
During the UN General Assembly last Saturday, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Cayetano cautioned against “misinformation” on the Duterte administration’s war on illegal drugs and decried what he called the “politicization of human rights.”
Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said the Philippines has the prerogative to accept or reject the recommendations of the UN.
“The Philippines has committed to fully accept 103 out of the 257 recommendations that we received during the Third Philippine Universal Periodic Review in Geneva,” Abella said.
“A careful review and inclusive consultation with inputs from various stakeholders, especially from representatives from the State’s executive, legislative, and judicial departments was done, and in line with our independent foreign policy,” he added.
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