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EU team in Philippines to help curb human rights abuses

ICC Note: The world waits to see if the Philippines can turn around its reputation for human rights violations with help from the EU.

6/24/07 Philippines (Agence France-Presse) — A European Union delegation has met Philippine officials to help Manila address human rights abuses, including political murders blamed on the security forces, a presidential aide said Friday.

“The mission is here to assess the needs of the Philippine government, to see how the EU might be able to extend technical assistance,” Eduardo Ermita, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s chief aide, told reporters.

The delegation arrived Monday to meet with the military and the police, which have been accused by independent investigators of extra-judicial killings, including of leftist activists.

The mission also met human rights campaigners and members of the judiciary in the Philippines , which is fighting one of the world’s longest-running Maoist insurgencies.

The EU and Manila have stressed the purpose of the 10-day mission was not to investigate rights abuses but to identify how the EU could help with aid and training to improve Philippine investigations into disappearances….

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