#ThewRap: Things you need to know, November 30, 2016

Dear Rappler reader,

It’s been a day of mourning and political grief in key parts of the world. Brazil and the football world were in tears on November 29, after a plane carrying a Brazilian team crashed in the mountains in Colombia, killing 71 people but miraculously leaving 6 survivors. In South Korea, the once popular South Korean President Park Geun-Hye faces the bleak prospect of impeachment and potential imprisonment if she is forced out – a disgrace that was unimaginable only a year ago. Back home, human rights advocates decried the hasty approval of the death penalty bill at the subcommittee level of the House of Representatives.

Here are stories you shouldn’t miss this Wednesday.


Duterte eyes talks with ISIS-inspired Maute group

After linking it to ISIS, President Rodrigo Duterte is considering talks with the Maute group, Malacañang said on Wednesday, November 30. Duterte went to Lanao del Sur on Wednesday to check military operations against the group, which seized the town of Butig last week. 

 Bonifacio Day: Protesting Marcos' burial

Thousands hold protests in key areas nationwide on Wednesday, November 30, Andres Bonifacio Day, culminating in a grand rally at the People Power Monument on EDSA. The rallies are a culmination of a series of protests against the burial of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani on November 18. 

PH slams UN envoy over human rights

The Philippines has sent a "very strong" protest note against a United Nations (UN) envoy who warned the Philippines over human rights abuses. David Scheffer, the UN secretary-general's envoy to a UN-backed court in Cambodia, had said that recent life sentences meted out on two ex-Khmer Rouge leaders should serve as a warning to the Philippines.  

Michelle O will 'never run'

Perish the thought. US president Barack Obama dismissed all speculation of a Michelle Obama presidential run in the future. She will “never run for office,” the president said in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine. She enjoys sky-high ratings, which make her more popular than her husband.

Soon to open: Chinese-backed 'mega' drug rehab

President Rodrigo Duterte, along with Chinese tycoon Huang Rulun and some Cabinet members, unveiled the marker of Phase I of the Mega Drug Abuse Treatment and Rehabilitation Center on Tuesday, November 29. The 11-hectare compound is set to be the largest drug rehab facility in the country once all 4 phases are complete, when it will be able to accommodate 10,000 patients. Huang donated funds to build the facility.

House railroading death penalty bill?

Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez denied that the House leadership is fast-tracking the passage of the bill seeking to reimpose the death penalty for heinous crimes in the country. The House justice panel’s subcommittee on judicial reforms voted 6-5-2 to approve House Bill (HB) Number 1, which would reinstate capital punishment for all heinous crimes. Opposition lawmakers accused Alvarez's team of rushing the bill for approval before the Christmas break.