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Senate vows to block budget cut

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A file photo shows Vice President Leni Robredo pays courtesy call on President Rodrigo R. Duterte at the Malacañan Palace. Wiki Commons CC BY-SA

MANILA (Reuters) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s critics and allies in the Senate vowed yesterday to block a lower house move to slash the annual budget of a public-funded human rights agency opposed to his bloody war on drugs to just $20. Vice President Leni Robredo, who has locked horns with him numerous times, said the lawmakers’ move effectively abolishes the CHR, a constitutional body. Critics say the lawmakers are trying to retaliate against the CHR for pursuing allegations of executions by police during sting operations, which police deny. The CHR is among the rights groups that Mr Duterte frequently admonishes, accusing them of lecturing him and disregarding Filipinos who are victims of crimes stemming from drug addiction.

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