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The Collective
Sunday, July 15, 2007
By Dr. Steven Taylor

Via the BBC: Manila terror law draws criticism

A tough new anti-terrorism law has come into effect in the Philippines.

The Human Security Act allows the government to detain suspects for up to three days without charge, use wiretaps and also seize suspects’ assets.

The government in Manila says the law will help it to tackle militant groups, such as Abu Sayyaf.


But critics, including the influential Roman Catholic Church, fear President Gloria Arroyo may be tempted to use the new powers to harass her political rivals.

They also say the law is being pushed through without clear implementing guidelines.

Opponents further worry that rogue elements in the army, accused of killing hundreds of mainly political activists over the past few years, will take the new law as a green light to step up their murderous activities, our correspondent says.

Yet another example of how anti-terrorism becomes an excuse for a government to expand its powers. And it is bad enough to have such powers, but even worse if the guidelines to use them are vague.

Further, it isn’t as if the Philippine government has a spotless human rights record-just surf over to HRW’s Philippines page and scan some recent headlines.

Sphere: Related Content

Filed under: War on Terror, Asia | |


  1. Arroyo Does Bush on GWOT

    The Reaction’s Michael J.W. Stickings asks if the Philippines is run by the Bush administration now, responding to the RP House of Representatives’ passage of the Human Security Act of 2007:
    The U.S. has the Patriot Act, now in a subsequen…

    Trackback by Left Flank — Sunday, July 15, 2007 @ 9:37 pm

  2. […] Read more here  […]

    Pingback by Paradise Philippines on Protests in the Philippines Over New Anti-Terror Law : Paradise Philippines — Tuesday, July 17, 2007 @ 10:37 am

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