Philippines Wins New Term on U.N. Rights Council, Drawing Outrage

Alan Peter Cayetano, the Philippines’ foreign secretary, at the United Nations General Assembly last month. He accused critics of mounting “well-funded efforts” to block the country’s bid to win a seat on the rights council.CreditCreditChang W. Lee/The New York Times


By Jason Gutierrez/nytimes.com – The Philippines has won another term on the United Nations Human Rights Council, a move condemned by international groups and officials as “unconscionable” but praised by Philippine officials as a “vindication” for a nation maligned around the world for President Rodrigo Duterte’s brutal drug war.

The country won a three-year term on Friday at the United Nations General Assembly, becoming one of 18 member states to join the 47-seat council through 2021. The vote was 192 to 165, the Philippine foreign secretary, Alan Peter Cayetano, said.

Human Rights Watch accused the Philippine president of overseeing a “killing frenzy” and said the vote for the country to retain its seat on the council risked undermining the body’s credibility and effectiveness.

The Philippines has been “undergoing a human rights crisis” that could amount to crimes against humanity, said Louis Charbonneau, Human Rights Watch’s director at the United Nations.

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