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Eleven human rights workers arrested, after Duterte’s threat to crack down on progressive groups

“Since Duterte’s threat last Saturday, November 18, to crackdown on progressive organizations, eleven (11) human rights (HR) workers – 9 from Batangas and 2 from Western Mindanao region – have been illegally arrested and detained. Mass arrest of members of an organization is fast becoming a trend in the PNP and AFP’s conduct of illegal arrests; It has become as brazen and as arbitrary. The authorities again claim that those arrested were members of the New People’s Army (NPA), a lie relegated as among the oldest trick in the PNP and AFP’s “how to get away with illegal arrest and human rights violations” rulebook. Whatever the State maneuver, there is no denying the systematic attack against HR workers under the Duterte regime,” said Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay. 

Eleven human rights workers arrested after Duterte’s threat to crack down on progressive groups

“Since Duterte’s threat last Saturday, November 18, to crackdown on progressive organizations, eleven (11) human rights (HR) workers – 9 from Batangas and 2 from Western Mindanao region – have been illegally arrested and detained. Mass arrest of members of an organization is fast becoming a trend in the PNP and AFP’s conduct of illegal arrests; It has become as brazen and as arbitrary. The authorities again claim that those arrested were members of the New People’s Army (NPA), a lie relegated as among the oldest trick in the PNP and AFP’s “how to get away with illegal arrest and human rights violations” rulebook. Whatever the State maneuver, there is no denying the systematic attack against HR workers under the Duterte regime,” said Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay. 

Karapatan slams wrongful conviction of volunteer health worker on trumped up charges

“For the government, what has been a more rampant practice of inconveniencing persons and violating people’s rights – perhaps more rampant than the tanim-bala experience of travellers in Philippine airports – is the tanim-baril/bomba modus operandi of the police and military against activists and development workers to justify their illegal arrest and detention,” said Roneo Clamor, Deputy Secretary General of Karapatan, as they received reports of the wrongful conviction of volunteer health worker and political prisoner Miguela Piniero. 

Miguela

Karapatan hits Duterte’s looming crackdown of progressive groups, trumped up charges vs activists

“In the mind of fascists like Duterte, any and all forms of just and legitimate opposition to his anti-people policies are all spun like the wildest conspiracy theories. His threat to crack down on Bayan and other progressive groups, with the twisted logic that they are an anathema to development and are conspiring with the Communist Party of the Philippines, is a tired and unoriginal repetition of the same plot weaved by known fascists like Marcos. Using the same pretext and adapting tricks from the same playbook of fascists, such moves will possibly be appropriated to justify nationwide martial law and intensified repression against the Filipino people,” stated Karapatan Secretary General Cristina Palabay in reaction to Duterte’s statement last Saturday, November 18. 

Commemorating Luisita massacre: No justice for peasants aspiring, struggling for genuine agrarian reform

As we commemorate the 13th year after the Hacienda Luisita massacre today, we express our solidarity with the struggle of the Filipino peasants against decades-old feudal exploitation and State fascism. 

On November 16, 2004, seven farmworkers were killed by State forces of the Macapagal-Arroyo regime and paid mercenaries of the Cojuangco-Aquino landlord clan, when the brutal and violent dispersal of the farmworkers demanding just and living wages occurred. For big landlords, compradors and governments, lives of peasants and the poor are cheap, that they can easily be discarded, as long as they have delivered profits for the rich while for years, they were denied of land and resources that they harness. And when they fight back to uphold their rights, they are considered necessary collateral damage to “keep the peace.” 

 

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