Human rights activist to speak about extrajudicial killings in the Philippines

Funeral procession
Funeral procession of a suspected drug addict, a victim of Duterte's War on Drugs, through a Filipino slum neighborhood. During his talk at DePaul, the Rev. Amado Picardal, C.Ss.R., will address the more than 10,000 murders carried out by police and death squads in Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte's War on Drugs.(Photo by Ezra Acayan)
On Thursday, Jan. 25 the Rev. Amado Picardal, C.Ss.R., will give the third talk in DePaul's Center for World Catholicism and Intercultural Theology's "Corporal Works of Mercy" lecture series. During his talk, titled "Burying the Dead: Extrajudicial Killings in the Philippines and the Catholic Church's Response," Fr. Picardal will address the more than 10,000 murders carried out by police and death squads in Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte's War on Drugs. Suspected of being addicts and pushers, the majority of murder victims are among the poor.

Besides helping bury the dead and providing economic and psychosocial assistance to families of victims, the Catholic Church in the Philippines is exercising a prophetic role. In addition to having established community-based rehab programs for drug users and addicts, the Church is monitoring and denouncing human rights violations and extending sanctuary to witnesses.

Fr. Picardal is a 63-year-old Filipino Catholic priest and member of the Redemptorist Congregation. A human rights and peace advocate, he's based in Davao, where he first began to speak out against the extrajudicial killings carried out there when Rodrigo Duterte was mayor. Since 2003, Fr. Picardal has served as spokesperson of the Coalition Against Summary Execution and of the Network Against Killings in the Philippines since 2016. He also serves as executive secretary of the Committee on Basic Ecclesial Communities for the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines.

Burying the Dead: Extrajudicial Killings in the Philippines and the Catholic Church's Response
Thursday, Jan. 25
6:30 reception
7 p.m. lecture
Lincoln Park Student Center, room 314 B