Practice Relating to Rule 159. Amnesty
Section A. Amnesty for participation in non-international armed conflicts
The Philippines’ Proclamation No. 10 (1992), as amended in 1992, states:
Amnesty is hereby granted in favor of those who have applied for amnesty under Executive Order No. 350, and whose applications had already been processed and are ready for final action as of date hereof, and whosoever may want to apply for amnesty under Executive Order No. 350 from the date of this Proclamation up to December 31, 1992, who have committed any act covered under Section 2 of Executive Order No. 350, series of 1989.
The Philippines’ Proclamation No. 347 (1994) states:
Amnesty is hereby granted to all persons who shall apply therefor and who have or may have committed crimes, on or before thirty (30) days following the publication of this Proclamation in two (2) newspapers of general circulation, in pursuit of political beliefs, whether punishable under the Revised Penal Code or special laws, including but not limited to the following: rebellion or insurrection; coup d’etat; conspiracy and proposal to commit rebellion, insurrection or coup d’etat; disloyalty of public officers or employees; inciting to rebellion or insurrection; sedition; conspiracy to commit sedition; inciting to sedition; illegal assembly; illegal association; direct assault; indirect assault; resistance and disobedience to a person in authority or the agents of such person; tumults and other disturbances of public order; unlawful use of means of publication and unlawful utterances; alarms and scandals; illegal possession of firearms, ammunition or explosives, committed in furtherance of, incident to, or in connection with the crimes of rebellion or insurrection; and violations of Articles 59 (desertion), 62 (absence without leave), 67 (mutiny or sedition), 68 (failure to suppress mutiny or sedition), 94 (various crimes), 96 (conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentlemen), and 97 (general article) of the Articles of War; Provided
, that the amnesty shall not cover crimes against chastity and other crimes committed for personal ends.
[emphasis in original]
The Proclamation also establishes the National Amnesty Commission charged with receiving and processing applications for amnesty and determining whether the applicants were entitled to amnesty under the proclamation.
The Philippines’ Proclamation No. 348 (1994) states:
Amnesty is hereby granted to all personnel of the AFP [Armed Forces of the Philippines] and the PNP [Philippine National Police] who shall apply therefor and who have or may have committed, as of the date of this Proclamation, acts or omissions punishable under the Revised Penal Code, the Articles of War or other special laws, in furtherance of, incident to, or in connection with counter-insurgency operations; Provided
, that such acts or omissions do not constitute acts of torture, arson, massacre, rape, other crimes against chastity, or robbery of any form; and Provided
, that the acts were not committed for personal ends.
[emphasis in original]
The Philippines’ Proclamation No. 390 (2000) states:
Whereas, the judicious grant of amnesty, as an instrument of reconciliation, to members and supporters of the MILF [Moro Islamic Liberation Front] will facilitate their return to a peaceful, democratic and pluralistic society so essential to the attainment of peace and prosperity;
Now, Therefore, I, Joseph Ejercito Estrada, President of the Republic of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by Section 19, Article VI of the Constitution, do hereby declare and proclaim:
1. Grant of Amnesty. – Amnesty is hereby granted to members and supporters of the MILF who have committed crimes on or before issuance of this Proclamation in pursuit of their political beliefs; Provided, that the amnesty granted under this Proclamation shall not cover kidnapping for ransom, massacre or torture of civilian non-combatants, rape, crimes against chastity and other crimes for personal ends; Provided further, that those who have already been granted amnesty under Proclamation Nos. 347, 724 and 21 can no longer qualify for amnesty under this Proclamation.
The Philippines’ Executive Order No. 335 (2001) states:
Whereas, a Peace Agreement was signed and executed on 06 December 2000 between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the Rebolusyonaryong Partido ng Manggagawa sa Pilipinas/Revolutionary Proletarian Army/A Boncayao Brigade (RPM-P/RPA/ABB) on the basis of their mutual interest to pursue a peaceful settlement of the present armed conflict and hasten the progress and development of the country to equally enjoy the fruits thereof by all citizens of the Republic of the Philippines.
, the Peace Agreement provides for the release of political prisoners and for the dismissal of charges filed against RPM-P/RPA/ABB officers and members currently under prosecution and for them to reintegrate and join the civil society.
The Philippines’ Proclamation No. 1377 (2007) states:
Whereas, accepting rebels back into the folds of the law through amnesty, and eventually providing them access to the government’s existing socio-economic services, are essential to attaining peace and reconciliation in the country;
Whereas, an amnesty program is an integral component of the Government’s comprehensive peace efforts as mandated in Executive Order No. 3 dated 28 February 2001;
Whereas, the granting of amnesty is part of the Social Integration Program for former rebels as provided under Administrative Order No. 172 dated 23 March 2007;
Whereas, there is an urgent need and expressed desire to extend amnesty to members of the CPP-NPA-NDF [Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front] and other communist rebel groups as an instrument of reconciliation, and as a path for their return to a peaceful, democratic, and pluralistic society;
Now, therefore, I, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, President of the Republic of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the land do hereby declare and proclaim:
Section 1. Grant of Amnesty. Amnesty shall be granted to members of the CPP-NPA-NDF and other communist rebel groups who shall apply under this Proclamation.
Section 2. Coverage. Amnesty shall cover the crime of rebellion and all other crimes included therein or incident thereto to pursuit of political beliefs as defined by jurisprudence, whether punishable under the Revised Penal Code or special laws.
Provided, that the amnesty granted under this Proclamation shall not cover the crimes against chastity, rape, torture, kidnapping for ransom, use and trafficking of illegal drugs and other crimes for personal ends and violations of international law or convention and protocols, even if alleged to have been committed in pursuit of political beliefs.
Section 3. Who may file for amnesty. Any member of the CPP-NPA-NDF and other communist rebel groups who has committed any act or omission in pursuit of political belief, referred to in Section 2, including those detained, charged or convicted for such acts or omission, may file an application for amnesty.
Section 4. Effects of Amnesty. The grant of amnesty shall have the following effects:
Extinction of Criminal Liability. Amnesty under this Proclamation shall extinguish any criminal liability for acts committed in pursuit of political beliefs, without prejudice to the grantee’s civil liability for injuries or damages caused to private persons.
Restoration of Civil or Political Rights. The grant of amnesty shall restore the grantee’s civil and political rights lost or suspended by virtue of conviction for crime/s covered thereby.