Nun’s call to drop Philip­pines

The Courier-Mail - - NEWS -

AN AUS­TRALIAN nun booted out of the Philip­pines has de­manded Can­berra cease its sup­port of the coun­try’s mil­i­tary which she says is com­mit­ting mas­sive hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions.

Catholic nun Pa­tri­cia Fox, 71, was ex­pelled from the Philip­pines a month ago but re­mains com­mit­ted to fight­ing hu­man rights abuses there.

Sis­ter Fox this week met fed­eral MPs from the hu­man rights sub-com­mit­tee in Can­berra to tell them about un­law­ful killings she had seen dur­ing her 28 years as a mis­sion­ary in the Philip­pines.

She is de­mand­ing the Aus­tralian gov­ern­ment re­con­sider its mil­i­tary part­ner­ship with Manila.

Aus­tralian De­fence Force sol­diers are train­ing Filipino troops in ur­ban war­fare as part of Oper­a­tion Augury.

“The mil­i­tary in the Philip­pines are mas­sive hu­man rights abusers and we are train­ing them ... it’s just sup­port­ing mas­sive hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions,” Sr Fox said.

“Are we go­ing to con­tinue prop­ping up a gov­ern­ment that is to­tally cor­rupt?”

The out­spo­ken nun said that dur­ing her three decades in the south­east Asian coun­try she had be­come aware of mur­ders, land con­fis­ca­tions and jail­ing of pro­test­ers.

The na­tion’s hard-line pres­i­dent, Ro­drigo Duterte, is ac­cused of sanc­tion­ing thou­sands of ex­tra­ju­di­cial killings.

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