June 9, 2023

Fighting for everyone’s human rights

We observe International Human Rights Day every Dec. 10.
The declaration cites the rights of everyone regardless of race, religion, political affiliation, status, and origin.
As we celebrate this year’s International Human Rights Day, we will again see some groups projecting themselves as champions of human rights. Organizations linked with the underground movement use the event to complain about alleged human rights abuses.
They have always claimed to be advocating respect for human rights. But why is it that when rebels ambushed soldiers who were delivering humanitarian aid to earthquake victims in Licuan-Baay, Abra on Oct. 27, these self-proclaimed human rights defenders never bothered condemning the horrifying act of the rebels?
They have always been mum on such incidents. This shows they are selective on groups or sectors whose human rights they want to fight for. Clearly, this is not what the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights wants.
Not condemning such ruthless act is tantamount to depriving those who were supposed to receive humanitarian aid. Instead, these supposed human rights defenders use issues on human rights abuses to portray that security forces are human rights violators. They use human rights violations as alibi to deprive the people of their right to know the truth about their true color.
Today, we are more empowered. We have access to the right information so we don’t need these supposed human rights defenders to be fight for our rights when they are selective on who they like to fight for.
We can stand for ourselves and fight for everyone’s human rights. — MA. LOUISA FOLIGAN, spokesperson, Samahan ng Mamayang Nagkakaisa Kontra Terorismo

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