On Marcos Jr.’s claims of decreased HR violations

Lies and more lies. This was Karapatan’s reaction to claims by Ferdinand Marcos Jr. that “incidents of human rights violations were down by half in 2023 as compared to 2022.”

Contrary to Marcos Jr.’s declaration, Karapatan documented significant increases in the most serious human rights violations such as extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances.
There were 60 extrajudicial killings in 2023 compared to 41 in 2022, showing a jump of 46%. Another 46 individuals survived attempts on their lives in 2023 compared to a mere 29 in 2022, reflecting a 58% increase in the number of frustrated extajudicial killings. The biggest hike is in the number of victims of enforced disappearance—four victims in 2022 as opposed to 11 in 2023.

Karapatan also noted the 66% rise in the number of victims of indiscriminate firing, from 12,263 in 2022 to 20,391 in 2023. Victims of bombing attacks by the AFP also markedly rose from 2,354 in 2022 to 20,391 in 2023, for a whopping 766% increase. Documented reports of fake surrenders likewise rose from 153 in 2022 to 401 in 2023, for a hike of 162%.

These figures are enough to dispel Marcos Jr.’s false claims that things are looking better on the human rights front. The only thing that distinguishes Marcos Jr. from Duterte is his conscious cultivation of a more ‘presidential’ image compared to his predecessor’s crassness.

Strip Marcos Jr. of his veneer and you will find that he and Duterte have been enforcing the same fascist policies that have resulted in grave human rights violations as well as serious violations of international humanitarian law.