“Jokes” which often allude to violent acts was staple in the speeches of former Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte during his presidential campaign and throughout his administration.
This eventually progressed to red-tagging or accusing individuals or groups as terrorists or rebel sympathizers. In 2020, the Commission on Human Rights voiced its concern over the increasing number of red-tagging reports even in the face of the pandemic and government-mandated lockdown.
The former president also gave a “shoot-to-kill” order for quarantine violators and threatened those who protest his pandemic response. Coincidentally, in the same year, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights released a report on the human rights situation in the Philippines, citing red tagging, among others, as a cause of concern.
This article aims to demonstrate how the former president's "jokes" are not as harmless as claimed and are equivalent to inciting crimes against humanity by comparing precedents in cases decided by various international criminal tribunals with his actions.
Josiah David Quising, Far Eastern University - Institute of Law, Philippines
See this presentation on the full schedule – Friday Schedule