US senators call for review of $32M aid


    THREE US senators have asked the US State Department to review a $32-million assistance package for training and law enforcement in the Philippines, decrying President Rodrigo Duterte’s “ongoing deadly campaign of mass atrocities.”

    Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican, and Democrats Edward Markey and Christopher Coons, all members of the US Senate’s foreign relations committee, said the legality and appropriateness of the funding should be assessed amid “serious allegations of extrajudicial killings that have surfaced in the course of President Duterte’s war on drugs.”

    They cited reports that there were at least 2,000 victims of extrajudicial killings and another 3,800 deaths—the result of inadequately investigated homicides connected to what they called “a campaign of mass atrocities.”

    The lawmakers noted that the Leahy Law prohibits US assistance or support of any unit of a foreign country’s security forces when its members have carried out gross human rights violations.

    “What is our process for tracking the use of US funds in the Philippines to ensure that none of our foreign assistance money dedicated to law enforcement activities is being used to support the extrajudicial killings or other human rights violations of Duterte’s campaign?” the senators asked in a letter dated December 22.

    The letter was directly addressed to Assistant Secretary William Brownfield of the US Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs.

    To recall, US Secretary of State John Kerry pledged the $32-million assistance package to the Philippines in his July visit to Manila.

    In August, Duterte told the Armed Forces of the Philippines he would use the $32-million aid to purchase military equipment. “We will acquire so many things. When US Secretary of State John Kerry came here, he left me with $32 million. You may use it. I will divide it between you and the police,” he said.

    In China in October, Duterte announced his military and economic “separation” from the US amid Washington’s criticism of drug-related killings in the Philippines. He also ordered a stop to joint military exercises and naval patrols.

    The senators said that “While supporting law enforcement in foreign countries can be a key element of advancing US interests overseas, recipients of our financial assistance must align with our values and ideals, including respect for human rights and the rule of law.”

    They suggested that drug addicts be given access to treatment and a pathway to rehabilitation, not a summary execution where the police or vigilantes act as judge, jury and executioner.

    “We urge the US to denounce these horrific violations of basic human rights, and ensure that no foreign assistance is being provided to support egregious acts against humanity,” they added.

    Sought for reaction, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said it would wait for the State Department to respond to the senators’ letter.

    “That’s internal to the US government,” Charles Jose, DFA assistant secretary and spokesman, told The Manila Times. “We have to wait and see if or how the State Department reacts to the letter.”

    The State Department earlier terminated the government’s plan to sell some 26,000 assault rifles to the Philippine National Police, while the US foreign aid agency Millennium Challenge Corp. deferred a vote on a news assistance package for the Philippines over “concerns around rule of law and civil liberties.”


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    1. US aid amounting to $ 32M is nothing as compared to US support to other countries several are not even their their allies. Anyway, the Philippines can afford to raise that amount for the sake of our sovereignty and independence. So called US aid has lots of strings attached to allow US to meddle into our internal affairs treating our country as if its US colony.

      Below is a breakdown of top US aid recipients & how it is distributed:

      Clearly, not all aid is distributed equally. The question is: Who received the largest slice of the pie from the U.S.?
      Of the $35 billion of total economic aid distributed, almost a quarter of funds went to five countries. Below are the top 5 recipients of economic aid in 2014.

      Israel: $3.1 billion

      Egypt: $1.5 billion

      Afghanistan: $1.1 billion

      Jordan: $1.0 billion

      Pakistan: $933 million

      – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/11/spends-billion-foreign/#sthash.xgxP9hWr.dpuf

    2. These senators seems to be watching more of oligarch news feeds which are full of lies.

      If they are wise enough, they zhould go to Philippines and find out the right news na unedited.

    3. John Chameleon on

      Why can’t America just be honest? It has no more money since Obama left its economy on the ground and has wasted money for Iran, Syria and its refugees and all his brothers and sisters in terrorism. More than a trillion dollars loan from China and almost same amount loaned from Japan. AMERICA IS ABOUT TO DECLARE BANCRUPTCY.

    4. Daniel B. Laurente on

      Hindi nyo kailangan magbigay ng pera sa Pililinas…ibayad nyo na pandagdag sa utang nyo na napakali sa China.

    5. Is it an aid?

      Is it a bribe?

      Is it a gift?
      Remember the old saying “Beware of Greeks bearing strange Gift”.
      It might be a Trojan Horse and of course everybody knows what happened then.

    6. Mr. MICHAEL JOE T. DELIZO, are you instigating that the government authorities are behind all the killings? whahahaha where did you get your information? from the Yellows isn’t it. Tell the americans to take back their so called donation or assistance worth 32 Million USD. The present administration don’t need it anyway or just give the money to greedy LP members and get lost. Mass atrocities of drug lords, pushers/peddlers and addicts? So be it. Don’t get involved into drugs if you don’t want to be killed.

    7. Brief presidential history of the Philippines at a glance:
      *Quirino’s administration – corruption and rebellion
      *Magsaysay – suspicious air plane crush that killed Magsaysay
      *Garcia – The Philippines run by Senator Recto and Laurel politicians
      *Macapagal – famous corruptions by Harry Stonehill American businessman in PH deported to the USA
      *Marcos – martial law, killings, corruptions
      *Cory Aquino – Philippines run by her advisers, even the scrubbing of the American bases in PH
      *Ramos – corruption
      *Estrada -corruption
      *Macapagal- Arroyo -corruption
      *Noynoy Aquino – corruption

      After approximately 66 years DU30 became the president of the Philippines>

      Give me a good reason that the Philippines will be better off today and the incoming years. Use your IQ if you have super IQ, then tell the world that the Philippines will be reformed to be great and respected country.

      POVERTY IN THE PHILIPPINES HAS BEEN INCREASING SINCE 1950. It is increasing farther without control.

      YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT INCLUDING YOUR CHILDREN. Ask the current politicians what do they and their children eat? Do they buy their foods using clean money?

      Donald J. Trump’s message — America First! Plain and Simple!

      Donald has so many crab mentality adversaries now. His envying enemies want to pull him down. It is not surprising. He is like a growing tree subjected by violent oppositions, strong winds and man made calamities. But he will overcome because he loves America.

      If the Philippines could befriend with Russia and China, why abandon America? America will be a winner under Donald. The United States again will be respected by the Free world. KAYO MGA FILIPINO NA HUMAHANGA KAY OBAMA AT HILARY SUMAMA NA KAYO KAY DONALD. HINDI KAYO MAGSISISI!

    8. Juan Puruntong on

      Huh! Campaign of mass atrocities? These 3 stooges must be watching too much Fox News, let me refresh the memories of Senators Delubyo, Monkey, and Goons – It is YOUR COUNTRY WHO ARE COMMITTING MASS ATROCITIES IN SYRIA, IRAQ, AFGANISTAN, VIETNAM , Black People, etc! You can shove your money up your bottoms and D30 will do his job as expected no matter what it takes…D30 will be a catalyst in Asia.

      • huh Your Duterte will make your country isolated in the Global Community just like North Korea.

      • Let’s not forget that in the waning days of WWII, the USA detonated 2 atomic bombs over Japan that massacred at least 250,000 civilians! You read that right CIVILIANS! So who’s the monster here?

    9. Let us respect the decision of the US in this case. If they give that’s good and if they don’t then accept their decision with open heart.

    10. The well is going to dry up soon for the Manila government, and how and when these types of assistance money are going to be replaced is the quagmire in which the Duterte administration will find themselves. The Chinese don’t give away money without any strings attached. No country ever does. Ask Mongolia, France, and Denmark. And Singapore. Duterte must be firm on his choice of BFFs. China, or the US. But he better decide soon.

    11. u.s. should take it all back and go away for good.

      It is not an aid, it’s a bribe dangled at the bottomless mouth of greedy pinoy government officials, or if it hardware it is going to be sold to the abbus anyway.