October, 2015

Camp Bagong Diwa Political Prisoners Hail October 2015 Manilakbayan

October 25, 2015

We, political prisoners, hail the matchers and other participants and supporters -- along the way, and even in other far away places -- of the October 2015 Manilakbayan.

This mass protest activity has travelled all the way from the farthest part of Mindanao in the south to the national capital, to decry and bring to the attention of the people all over the country the extremely cruel fascism that has been victimizing the indigenous Lumad and other exploited and oppressed people in the country.

The truth can never be concealed

By their incessant and orchestrated hurling of calumny and red-tagging, the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process and the Armed Forces of the Philippines and its agents attempted to malign the work of Karapatan through columns in the Philippine Daily Inquirer and other dailies, news websites such as Rappler and social media. Thanks but no thanks. Thank you because the issues were brought to the fore and gave the public the opportunity to ruminate and understand them.

Calls for justice ring as ManiLakbayan arrives in Manila

"Today, October 24, as ManiLakbayan heads to Metro Manila, its 700-strong participants also commemorate the first year of the killing of a fellow Lumad, Henry Alameda,” Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay said, two days before the peoples of Mindanao are set to arrive at the National Capital Region. The ManiLakbayan, under the BS Aquino administration, comes to Manila with the call to "Stop Lumad killings and the attacks on schools, communities and peoples."

Manilakbayan 2015 contingent 

Political prisoner Eduardo Serrano must be immediately released – Quezon City court

A local court issued the order for the immediate release of a political prisoner detained for more than eleven (11) years for trumped up charges filed by the Armed Forces of the Philippines. 
Marilou Runes-Tamang, presiding  judge of Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 98, today ruled that political prisoner Eduardo Serrano is NOT the accused Rogelio Villanueva and must be immediately released.

Killings continue as the case of Tentorio and Capion remain in the dustbin

"Four years after Fr. Fausto Tentorio was killed on October 17, 2011, the schools he helped build for the Lumad are now the targets of military operations and are targets for closure. Three years after the Capion massacre on October 18,  four more massacres followed. Meanwhile, the cases filed against the perpetrators of the killing and the massacre are not moving. Worse, the AFP-backed paramilitary forces continue to multiply and spread like plague in Lumad communities,” said Karapatan Secretary General Cristina Palabay.  

#StopLumadKillings international campaign steps-up

Solidarity is not just a hashtag

US-based lawyers, faith-based/ecumenical institutions, distinguished university professors and human rights advocates sent letters to Phil. President Benigno Aquino III and US authorities to express the concern of the international community on the killing of Lumad leaders Dionel Campos and Juvello Sinzo and Lumad school executive Emerito Samarca. 

Military has no proof Rogelio Villanueva is Eduardo Serrano

"What should have been a hearing to finally determine whether “Rogelio Villanueva” is Eduardo Serrano, a political prisoner detained for more than 10 years now because of false charges, became a hearing to present witnesses who are obviously lying," Karapatan Secretary General Cristina Palabay said. 
Eduardo Serrano

Arroyo is the human rights violator, not the victim

“The findings of the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (UN WGAD) regarding the ‘complaint’ of former Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo shows the BS Aquino regime’s wishy-washy prosecution and special treatment of GMA on the cases of plunder filed against her. Instead of giving due course to the strong criminal and civil cases filed by the Morong 43 and the United Church of Christ in the Philippines against GMA and her military generals, the Aquino administration drags its feet in pursuing GMA’s accountability for human rights abuses because these are the same rights violations perpetrated under its watch,” Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay said referring to the UN WGAD’s view that the detention of former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo violated international human rights law.



In behalf of our organizations UMANGAT-MIGRANTE and ICHRP-Rome, Italy and other fellow overseas Filipino Workers in Italy, we express our full support to the ongoing struggles of the Lumad  against the closures of their schools, militarization of their villages and the unbaiting Human Rights

Appeal for Action: Cagayan Valley leaders, activists falsely charged with kidnapping and homicide

Dear Friends, 

Pease join us in our call to stop the criminalization of human rights work, a tactic that the BS Aquino regime has repeatedly used against activists and leaders of progressive people’s organizations. 

The same tyrannical act the BS Aquino regime used in Mindanao, among leaders of people’s organizations in Davao City and General Santos City, is now used against the 69 leaders and activists in the Cagayan Valley region in an attempt to suppress the people’s voice against the rising cases of military abuses in the region. 

40 days since Lianga Massacre, murderers still sow terror

"Forty (40) days after the Lianga Massacre, AFP-backed leaders of paramilitary groups Bobby and Jojo Tejero are still sowing terror, and attacks against the Lumad continue. The warrant of arrest against the murderers has yet to be served, and the indigenous communities that forcibly evacuated from their communities have not gone back to their homes because of continuing military operations," Karapatan Secretary General Cristina Palabay said.

SELDA on Sen. Bongbong Marcos' bid for vice president

The vice-presidential candidacy of the son and namesake of the late, unlamented dictator Ferdinand Marcos has only further confirmed the Marcoses’ delusion of (returning to) continuing power to (re-)establish their brand of anti-people and fascist rule. That such a political charlatan could have the gall to project himself as pro-democracy and pro-people speaks volumes about his malevolence. He has been short of telling us that the Marcoses have been God’s gift to the Philippines.

AFP, DND asks for bigger budget to fund its paramilitaries

"Despite the killings and terror committed by its paramilitary groups, the Armed Forces of the Philippines has the nerve to ask for more budget to fund them," said Cristina Palabay, Karapatan secretary general on the plenary deliberations at the Lower House of the Department of National Defense' budget. 

Appeal for Action: Brgy. White Culaman, Kitaotao, Bukidnon in a state of martial law

On June 8-10, 2015, residents of Brgy. White Culaman, Kitaotao, Bukidnon in Mindanao held a protest action at the Kitaotao municipal hall demanding from the local government unit the distribution of the PhP 8 Million calamity fund intended for farmers affected by El Nino phenomenon. 

The LGU acceded to the residents’ demands, but municipal officials reportedly called up White Culaman Brgy. Captain Felipe Cabugnason informing him of his constituents’ actions. Since then, the military operations led by the 8th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army (IBPA) and the 23rd IBPA continue to this day, October 8, 2015. 

AFP’s terror campaign vs Lumad schools escalates

"There is no let up in the regime’s campaign to close down Lumad schools. The landlord BS Aquino may have felt so humiliated there are segments of our society who do not depend on his “benevolence”. The Lumad built their own schools to save the children from illiteracy because the government has other priorities. These Lumad schools, for months now, have been the subject of red tagging, threats of closure, and the teachers and students harassed and killed,” said Marie Hilao-Enriquez, Karapatan chairperson. 

Aquino regime targets leaders of Cagayan Valley people’s orgs

Some 69 leaders of progressive people’s organizations and partylist groups in Cagayan Valley region are the latest victims of the BS Aquino regime’s practice of filing trumped-up criminal charges. “The regime has done it again in an attempt “to silence opposition and prevent them from amplifying the people’s demand for justice amid intensifying human rights violations in the region,” said Karapatan Chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez.