Trudeau raises human rights in meeting with Duterte

MANILA — Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday said he raised the issue on human rights, rule of law, specifically extrajudicial killings during his bilateral meeting with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte during the ASEAN Summit held here.

Trudeau bared this in a press conference at the International Media Center in World Trade Center, Pasay City.

He said that aside from discussing people-to-people ties between Canada and the Philippines, he also mentioned human rights as an issue that Canada is “concerned with.”

According to him, Duterte was “receptive” to his comments.

“The President was receptive to my comments and it was throughout a very cordial and positive exchange,” Trudeau said.

Trudeau pointed out that bringing up human rights is “very much what people expect of Canada and it comes no surprise when we do bring it up.”

“Canada is a country that always brings up human rights issues and strongly engages in line with our values everywhere around the world,” Trudeau said.

“This is something important to Canadians and it’s important to the world and I will always bring it up,” he added.

The Canadian Prime Minister also said that he was able to impress upon Duterte “the need for respect to the rule of law” and at the same time offered help to address human rights violations.

“As I mentioned to Pres. Duterte, we’re concerned with human rights, with extrajudicial killings. I impressed upon him the need for respect to the rule of law and as always offered Canada’s support and help as a friend to help move forward on what is the real challenge.,” Trudeau said.

Not perfect

Trudeau, however, acknowledged that Canada also had its own share of failures in terms of protecting human rights particularly among indigenous peoples.

“We are not perfect either that indigenous peoples in Canada have suffered neglect, marinization and mistreatment for decades if not centuries,” Trudeau said.

“So, we know that talking about human rights is an essential part of a path forward. It has to be done in an honest and frank way. But it has to be done,” he noted.

He said that Canada is willing to share its own experiences in addressing the challenge.

“We know that there is always more work to do and Canada inevitably offers support and help both through our own experiences in where we have failed and where we have succeeded but also in our intuitions whether it’s our justice system, whether it’s around policing, whether it’s around governance,” Truduea said.

He said that Canada could share their best practices and help countries move along in way that creates opportunity, security stability for all its citizens.

“We are always looking at not how we can shake our finger and yell (at) our people but how we can help, how we can move forward in a way that reduces violence that emphasizes the rule of law that it ensures protection for all citizens,” he added.