Canada-Philippines helicopter deal sparks human rights concerns

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday said he had cancelled a US$235 million contract to buy 16 helicopters from Canada after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government ordered a review over human rights concerns.

"They must not politicise the acquisition", said Major-General Restituto Padilla, the deputy chief of staff for plans and programmes of the Philippine armed forces.

"These (helicopters) are a real benefit to Filipinos", Canadian ambassador John Holmes said on the mission's Facebook page, adding it would boost Manila's "search and rescue and disaster relief capabilities".

But International Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne announced Wednesday he had ordered a review of the deal, which was finalized in December, after a senior member of the Philippines military said the aircraft would also be used in "internal security operations". "You will never get it as long as we are president", he said.

The government in Ottawa earlier expressed concerns the helicopters could be used to fight rebels. "We are neutral", Duterte said, without making clear if he was referring to Canada or the USA, his country's treaty ally, or both.

Trudeau said in November he had spoken to Duterte about "human rights, the rule of law, and specifically extrajudicial killings".


"It angers me when you are a foreigner, you do not know what exactly is happening in this country".

The Canadian PM said Duterte has been receptive to comments regarding his government's crackdown on drug dealers that had claimed several lives. "He is doing it also for his country, people just don't understand him".

Philippine troops and police, beset by Islamist and communist insurgencies, fought a five-month battle previous year against Islamic State group supporters in the southern city of Marawi.

Almost 4,000 mostly poor drug suspects have been killed in clashes with police, according to police officials, who say the suspects resisted violently.

Bensouda has said in the past that she was deeply concerned about reports of the killings, and that statements by "high officials" in the Philippines "seem to condone such killings".


Popular
  • 'Black Panther' Is A MUST-SEE Film

    'Black Panther' Is A MUST-SEE Film

    Panther as the chief of the Panther Tribe, but is killed when a bomb goes off at the United Nations making his son the Black Panther .
    Japan sends quake rescue team, equipment to Taiwan

    Japan sends quake rescue team, equipment to Taiwan

    Rescuers worked their way around and through the building while residents looked on from behind cordoned-off roads. The powerful 6.4-magnitude tremor struck at 23:50 (15:50 GMT) about 20km (12 miles) off the island's east coast.
    Indianapolis Colts officially name Josh McDaniels head coach

    Indianapolis Colts officially name Josh McDaniels head coach

    However, Rob Gronkowski , the Patriots' all-world tight end, virtually confirmed McDaniels' pending departure. This was a game where the offenses took over as the teams set six offensive Super Bowl records combined.
  • AIMPLB Member Salman Nadvi Supports Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, Board Miffed

    AIMPLB Member Salman Nadvi Supports Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, Board Miffed

    The court also brought to notice that it would be dealing with the Ram Mandir-Babri Masjid case as a pure land dispute case. The court was informed that certain books filed in the set of appeals were in a language other than English.
    Hong Kong court frees 'umbrella movement' leaders

    Hong Kong court frees 'umbrella movement' leaders

    Court of Final Appeal says lower court "erred" in considering sentencing against Joshua Wong , Nathan Law and Alex Chow . But after the government's intervention they were jailed for between six and eight months by the Court of Appeal.
    Facebook bans ads promoting cryptocurrencies, ICOs

    Facebook bans ads promoting cryptocurrencies, ICOs

    The offerings are a means of raising capital through the sale of digital currency which can then be traded. Leathern said the company wanted to make it "harder for scammers to profit from a presence on Facebook ".
  • In SOTU Response, Kennedy Accuses Trump of Dividing US

    In SOTU Response, Kennedy Accuses Trump of Dividing US

    A former Peace Corps volunteer, Kennedy was an assistant district attorney in two MA districts before being elected to Congress. Joseph Kennedy struck a very different tone from that of the president in delivering the Democratic Party's response.
    Xerox to combine with Fujifilm

    Xerox to combine with Fujifilm

    Current Xerox CEO Jeff Jacobson will continue lead the company, while Fujifilm CEO Shigetaka Komori will serve as chairman. However, as is often the case with many companies' restructuring efforts, there will be casualties.

    Blue moon eclipse coming this week

    The National Planetarium in a statement said several telescopes will be provided for observing the lunar eclipse. The best time to view the eclipse will be at 5:29 a.m., when onlookers can expect to see a dimly lit red moon.
  • Burnley hold City to a draw

    Burnley hold City to a draw

    The Cityzens has spent a ridiculous amount of money since the boss came in and people are sitting up and taking note. We use cookies to give you the best experience on our website and bring you more relevant advertising.
    Martyrs Day: Tributes paid to 'Father of the Nation' Mahatma Gandhi

    Martyrs Day: Tributes paid to 'Father of the Nation' Mahatma Gandhi

    A "sarva dharma prarthana sabha" (all religion prayer meeting) was held to pay tributes to the "Father of the Nation". Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also paid their homage to Gandhi ji.
    Federal Bureau of Investigation  deputy director steps down amid Trump criticism

    Federal Bureau of Investigation deputy director steps down amid Trump criticism

    Trump has repeatedly tweeted that the Justice Department has insufficiently investigated Hillary Clinton during the 2016 campaign. Mr McCabe and fired FBI director James Comey had key roles in the agency's investigation into Mrs Clinton's emails.

CONNECT