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Human rights activist vows to 'keep on fighting' under Duterte

Commission Chairman Gascon stands firm despite Philippines' ICC pullout

Demonstrators hold a rally in Manila in 2017 to protest the war on drugs of President Rodrigo Duterte. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TOKYO -- The Philippines' independent human rights watchdog has faced many challenges since its inception three decades ago, but according to Jose Luis Martin Gascon, chairman of Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines, the organization has never dealt with a bigger threat than the presidency of Rodrigo Duterte. 

The commission's latest challenge is Duterte's decision to withdraw the Philippines from the International Criminal Court on Sunday, despite an uproar from civil society, both domestically and overseas.

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