Congresswoman Schakowsky Urges Immediate Release and Full Exoneration of Senator Leila De Lima, Who Remains Unjustly Detained in the Philippines

February 19, 2021
Press Release

EVANSTON - Today, Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, a Senior Chief Deputy Whip and Chair of Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee, released the following statement regarding the acquittal of Senator Leila de Lima in one of three false charges filed against her by the Government of the Philippines:

“It is a step in the right direction that one of three sham charges against Philippine Senator Leila de Lima was dropped yesterday. However, it is not enough. The remaining charges against Senator de Lima must be dropped and she must be released immediately. Senator De Lima has been unjustly detained for nearly four years, simply for speaking out against the Duterte Administration and its egregious abuses of power. I stand with Senator De Lima and the people of the Philippines in their quest for human rights, free speech, press, and assembly, and for democracy itself. I will work with my colleagues to continue to hold the Duterte government responsible for its campaign of lies, intimidation, and violence against Senator De Lima, other prisoners of conscience, and the Philippine people.”

Senator de Lima has been imprisoned for nearly four years on politically-motivated charges. These charges have been widely condemned by human rights organizations and governments around the world as illegitimate and are viewed as an attempt to silence and punish her for criticizing the policies of President Rodrigo Duterte.