By Macon Araneta

Dismissing the call of some US Congress members  to repeal the Anti- Terrorism Act of 2020, Sen. Panfilo Lacson told them to shut up “unless they admit to being a bunch of hypocrites” while Senate President Vicente Sotto III asked them to mind their own business. 

“I wonder how many among those 50 or so members of the US Congress voted in favor of their own country’s Anti-Terrorism Act of 2001,” said Lacson. 

Unlike the US version of the Anti-Terror Law, Lacson said, Republic Act 11479 has no provision for a Guantánamo Bay-like detention facility where indefinite detention without trial of suspected terrorists, on top of torture and breach of human rights, suicides and suicide attempts have been reported by Amnesty International — all in violation of the Due Process Clause of the US Constitution.

And unlike their Anti-Terrorism Act of 2001, Lacson said, Philippine law does not allow one-party consent in the conduct of electronic or technical surveillance.

While Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020 is replete with safeguards to ensure that human rights of suspected terrorists are observed and protected, he said, what the US Congress passed as their version of an Anti-Terrorism law is much draconian.

He also said the US version is even cruel and exclusive to its citizens because their policy makers give the highest premium to their country’s security and the protection of US citizens anywhere in the world.

Sotto also told the American lawmakers to scratch their own galis and not interfere in the Philippines.

He cited that US lawmakers should look into their own  Anti -terrorism Law called Homeland Security Act.

In a letter sent to the Philippine ambassador, 45 members of the US  House of Representatives called for to repeal the  Anti -Terrorism Law due human rights violations.