Friday, March 9, 2012

Towards breaking culture of impunity, Senate ratifies OPCAT -Amnesty International -Philippines

Amnesty International welcomes the ratification of the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture (OPCAT) by the Philippine Senate today.

“Amnesty International campaigned the Philippines to ratify OPCAT since the time it was adopted by the United Nation General Assembly in 2002 together with the United Against Torture Coalition (UATC).  Today is another good day for human rights in the Philippines. We commend the Senators for ratifying OPCAT only half a year after the Rome Statute was concurred despite the ongoing Impeachment Trial at the Senate,” said Amnesty International Philippines Director, Dr. Aurora Parong.

The optional protocol was ratified with no objections or abstentions as reported by the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

“As of October 2011, OPCAT  has 71 signatories and 61 parties. The Philippines is the latest addition to this list. But this is only another step towards protection against torture. What’s need to be accomplished by the Aquino administration now is the setting up of a preventive mechanism that monitors all places of detention, inspects facilities and makes recommendations for the prevention of torture and other ill-treatment in the Philippines,” emphasized Dr. Parong.

Amnesty International explains that the OPCAT is designed to bring the State to actively engage in the prevention of torture. Its ratification in the Philippines will bring positive changes not only in its systems but practices and curb the culture of impunity in the country.

Press Release
6 March 2012
Maria Edilyd P. Orias
Program Coordinator
Media Communication and Publications
M: +63 999 628 2066
Amnesty International Philippines
18-A Marunong Street, Bgy. Central,
Quezon City, 1100, Philippines
T: +63 2 433 8100

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