US senators pushing for De Lima's release "misled," says Palace
Malacanang said on Friday that the US senators pushing for a resolution calling for the release of detained opposition Senator Leila de Lima have been "misled" and they do not understand the judicial process in the Philippines.
"Apparently they have been misled by the reports coming from the opposition, as well as media outlets who had been biased against the administration. What I can’t understand is they adhere not to understand the judicial process of this country," said Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo in an interview by CNN Philippines.
He said the US lawmakers should know the judicial system in the country since it is almost the same as theirs.
"So, I cannot understand why this committee is oblivious of that processes that went through in relation to the former senator or for Senator De Lima," said Panelo, also the chief presidential legal counsel.
A US Senate committee has passed a resolution calling for the dropping of all charges against De Lima, as well as Rappler chief Maria Ressa, and to allow the senator to fully discharge her legislative mandate, especially as chair of the Senate committee on social justice.
The resolution also urged US President Donald Trump to impose sanctions against the Philippine government officials responsible for De Lima's arrest.
Panelo lamented why the American senators could not understand the Philippine process.
He said only the judiciary decides who should be put in jail and not any other branches of government.
He said US Senator Ed Markey and his other colleagues in the Senate backing the resolution should study the process in the Philippines so that they would not listen based on hearsay. Celerina Monte/DMS