Palace admits: Refusal of aid from drug war inquiry backers an ‘outrage reaction’

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 05 2020 05:17 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte delivers a speech during the 11th Biennial National Convention and 22nd founding anniversary of the Chinese Filipino Business Club, Inc. at The Manila Hotel on February 10, 2020. Toto Lozano, Presidential Photo

MANILA - Malacañang admitted Thursday that the Philippines' decision to shun aid and loans from countries who supported a resolution seeking a report on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs was “more of an outrage reaction.”

Panelo made the remark after Manila, on Feb. 27, lifted the suspension of negotiations with 18 countries that backed an inquiry into the drug war

“You must remember that that was made because of what they—of this countries did when they passed that resolution condemning the war on drugs in this country,” Panelo told reporters in Malacañang.

“And it was more of an outrage reaction, having already expressed our stand on that, perhaps there is now a reason to change it,” he said.

Panelo, however, said he has yet to ask President Rodrigo Duterte on the reasons for lifting the ban.

Last year, Panelo even touted the government’s decision to shun aid from countries that backed Iceland’s resolution that called for a report on Manila’s human rights situation, including extrajudicial killings under Duterte’s drug war.

“It is a political statement. You don’t mess with this country with that kind of resolution,” Panelo told reporters in Malacañang in September last year.

Countries that favored the resolution were Argentina, Austria, Australia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Fiji, Iceland, Italy, Peru, Mexico, Slovakia, Spain, Ukraine, United Kingdom including Northern Ireland, and Uruguay.