Duterte's Choice: The Tyrant Emerged

2017 Karapatan Year-End Report on the Human Rights Situation in the Philippines 


"The year 2017 unfolded Duterte’s true nature, a greedy and cruel war-mongering president who uses his power to perpetrate a killing rampage against the people – his war on drugs, his own brand of war-on-terror, and his military’s all-out-war. His imposition and extension of martial law in Mindanao and his continuing implementation of government’s counterinsurgency program, presently Oplan Kapayapaan, have exposed Duterte as a fascist instrument beholden to the whims of his imperialist master, the United States. Duterte has further consolidated his US-loyal security cluster and the neoliberal fanatics in his cabinet, resulting in intensifying attacks against people’s civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights. His government has taken the form of a paper tiger – desperately fronting a fierce strongman façade yet ultimately revealing a cowering and subservient running dog to its profit-hungry and fascist masters."

Submission to Victoria Tauli Corpuz, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples | March 16, 2018

Submission to Victoria Tauli Corpuz,
United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights
March 16, 2018

KARAPATAN Alliance for the Advancement of People’s Rights – Philippines[i] submits this report in response to the call of the Office of the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples for inputs to her thematic report on the issue of criminalisation and attacks faced by indigenous peoples asserting and defending their rights. In this submission, KARAPATAN critically examines the Philippine government’s compliance to international human rights instruments, in relation to indigenous human rights defenders, and presents our views and recommendations on the practice of State actors, under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, of filing criminal charges against these defenders. 

In the nearly two years of his presidency, Duterte has employed the resources of the State to attack, criminalize and target individuals and entire communities. Amid the alternatives given at the start of his term, Duterte has chosen to make State terrorism his irreversible and grim response to the public clamor for systemic and substantial change. Early on his first year in office, the President has relied on militarist solutions to the country’s problems. To date, his war on drugs has reportedly caused some 20,000 individual victims of extrajudicial killings[ii], precipitated by Duterte’s own orders and pronouncements[iii]. The government’s counterinsurgency program called Oplan Kapayapaan has resulted in grave human rights violations, including 126 victims of extrajudicial killings of mostly peasants and indigenous people, illegal arrests and detention, nearly half a million victims of bombings and forced evacuation, threats, intimidation and harassment of those critical of the President, including indigenous peoples and their defenders.[iv] 

Karapatan Monitor 2017 Issue No. 2

K Monitor 2017 Issue2 

Karapatan Monitor 2017 Issue No. 1

karapatan monitor issue 1 2017

2016 Karapatan Year-end Report on the Human Rights Situation in the Philippines

Cover YER 2016

As soon as Rodrigo Duterte became the evident winner in the last presidential elections, the public shut off BS Aquino from their minds and turned their attention to Duterte who espoused “change” during his electoral campaign. BS Aquino had been a dead weight on the shoulders of the Filipino people in the past six years. Never mind if up to the last minute, he acted under the illusion that he was the guardian of democracy like no other. 

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2015 Karapatan Year-end Report on the Human Rights Situation in the Philippines

On June 30, 2016, Benigno Simeon Aquino III, the 15th president of the Government of the Philippines, steps down from Malacañang. Plagued as it is with cases of bureaucratic corruption, criminal negligence, inept leadership, sell-out of the nation’s sovereignty, the BS Aquino presidency also leaves behind an atrocious record of human rights violations, which he continues to ignore to this day.

2015 Karapatan Human Rights Report 

Karapatan Monitor 2015 Issue No. 2

Karapatan Monitor 2015_2

2014 Karapatan Year-end Report on the Human Rights Situation in the Philippines

2014 Karapatan Human Rights Report

On December 10, as the world commemorated International Human Rights Day, the Filipino people, represented by progressive people’s organizations, put on trial the US-backed Aquino regime for crimes against the Filipino people.  

For more than four years, the US-backed Aquino regime has only resorted to dishing out catchy slogans to mask its attacks on the Filipino people—an endless and unproductive loop of lies.

Oplan Bayanihan, which is instrumental in the bombing of communities, illegal arrests, detention, and killings of activists, hides behind ‘peace and development, and respect for human rights’ slogans. 

The police brutality used against legitimate protest actions and during demolition of urban poor shanties masquerades as ‘maintenance of peace and order’. 


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