Jun 22, 2020 @ 16:01
Nanindak pa! Amal Clooney warned about US govt, press attacking Duterte if Ressa gets convicted – Locsin
The wife of actor George Clooney warned about the United States government and press retaliating against President Rodrigo Duterte if Rappler executive editor Maria Angelita Ressa got convicted.
This was revealed by Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddyboy Locsin week after the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 46 found Ressa and former Rappler writer guilty of cyber libel in the case filed by businessman Wilfredo Keng. British-Lebanese lawyer Amal Clooney announced she would join a team of international lawyers to beef up Ressa’s legal defense should they appeal the conviction.
“New ground for dismissal of case between 2 private parts. (Amal) Clooney & a guy told Amb.(Babes) Romualdez to drop the case because if Ressa is convicted the US government, civil society and the press would attack Duterte,” said Locsin on Twitter.
Clooney, an international human rights lawyer, wrote an op-ed piece in the Washington Post three days before Ressa’s conviction, in which she stated United States President Donald Trump would “strongly defend its citizens captured and falsely imprisoned abroad.”
“The world will be watching on Monday (June 15), and no one should be watching more closely than the (US) government. Because as well as being Filipino, Maria is American,” Clooney said.
“If Maria is convicted and locked up for doing her work, the message to other journalists and independent voices is clear: Keep quiet, or you’ll be next. Let’s hope that on Monday a trial judge in Manila will send a very different message. And that if she doesn’t, we will see a robust response,” Clooney added.
Locsin, however, mocked the US response to Ressa’s conviction. “They made good on the threat. SC (Supreme Court) must amend Rules of Court to add it,” he said.
New ground for dismissal of case between 2 private parts. Clooney & a guy told Amb. Romualdez to drop the case because if Ressa is convicted the US government, civil society and the press would attack Duterte. They made good on the threat. SC must amend Rules of Court to add it.
— Teddy Locsin Jr. (@teddyboylocsin) June 22, 2020
We are very concerned by the verdict against Maria Ressa and Reynaldo Santos and call for resolution of the case in a way that reinforces the U.S. and Philippines’ shared commitment to freedom of expression, including for members of the press.
— Ambassador Sung Kim (@USAmbManila) June 17, 2020
Maria Ressa was convicted in the Philippines yesterday for doing her job.
As Amal Clooney wrote, the message to other journalists is “Keep quiet, or you’ll be next.”
We must fiercely protest attacks on the press. They are attacks on democracy. https://t.co/YYyamMVfht
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) June 15, 2020
— Madeleine Albright (@madeleine) June 15, 2020