Appeals for Action

Environmental activist abducted and detained in Koronadal City, South Cotabato

On May 3, the Eastern Mindanao Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), through its spokesperson Capt. Alberto Caber, released a statement to the media claiming it has captured the “notorious NPA front secretary Felix Armodia who operated in Davao del Sur, South Cotabato and Tulunan, North Cotabato.”

Solidarity for the Manobo people’s struggle for the protection of land rights, self-determination, and the environment

May 11, 2014

Dear fellow advocates: 

Greetings of peace!

The Pantaron Range is a mountainous area that contains one of the last remaining primary forests in Mindanao, a part of our few remaining biodiversity corridors, and is a critical watershed for major river systems such as the Pulangi, Lasang and Davao rivers. It is ancestral home to thousands of Talaingod Manobo indigenous people, Lumads who gallantly defended Pantaron from big logging firm Alcantara and Sons (also known as Alson’s) in the 1990’s by organizing themselves into the Manobo federation, Salugpungan Ta Tanu Igkanugon (Unity in Defense of Ancestral Land; or, literally, 'a gathering {salugpong}for a land {tanu} that cannot-be-alienated [from us] {kanugon}').

In 1993, Datu Guibang Apoga, the chieftain of the Talaingod Manobos, united 83 different Manobo villages to rise against Alson’s and led a pangayaw, or a tribal declaration of war in defense of their lands, using traditional weapons against the company and its private security. The Pantaron struggle forced Alson’s to leave the area, thus preserving to date the flora and fauna of the Pantaron Range.

The current plight of the Talaingod Manabos

The Talaingod Manobos were forced on an exodus to Davao City away from their ancestral homes by a series of aerial bombings and intensified militarization by the combined forces of the 68th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army (IBPA), 60th IBPA of the 1003rd Brigade, and the 4th Special Forces under the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), which started on March 3, 2014.

 

Call for justice for Menelao "Boy" Barcia, Antonio Tolentino and farmers of Hacienda Dolores, Porac, Pampanga

Dear friends,

Please join us in our call for justice for the human rights violations of farmers in Hacienda Dolores, Porac, Pampanga.

Killing of village councilor

Initial reports from Karapatan-Central Luzon cited the killing of Menelao "Boy" Barcia, 57. Barcia was a Barangay councilor (kagawad) and an official of Alyansa ng Nagkakaisang Mamamayan ng Hacienda Dolores (Aniban or Alliance of United People of Hacienda Dolores).

Illegal arrest and detention, torture, threat and harassment of Andrea Rosal and Edward Lanzanas

On March 27, Edward Lazanas accompanied 7-month pregnant Andrea Rosal to Caloocan City for her check-up. They went to the residence of Ruben Gatchalian, barangay (village) captain of Brgy. 169, in BF Homes, Brgy. 169, Caloocan City to drop off their belongings before going to Rosal’s doctor.  At around 8:00a.m., Gatchalian went outside the house when they heard a sound of a car horn to check if it was someone he knew. A man with an armalite rifle introduced himself as an NBI agent and said he was looking for Rosal. The NBI agent approached Rosal and forced her to go with him, threatening her she will be dragged if she refused.

 

Enforced disappearance of gardener in San Fernando town, Cebu province

Case: Enforced disappearance

Victim/s: GARY AGUILAR SANTOS

  • 48 years old, male, working as a gardener at the house that was leased by the arbitrarily arrested and detained Wilma Austia Tiamzon, Benito Tiamzon, et al.  

Arrest and detention of peace consultants, companions

Case: Arbitrary/illegal arrest and detention; psychological torture; violations of the rights of arrested or detained persons includes violation of Miranda rights, right to counsel and visit by a human rights organization, among others]

 

Harassment and surveillance of human rights lawyer by suspected military intelligence units in Isabela province, Philippines

On 25 March 2014, at around 7:00 p.m., activist and paralegal William Bugatti was gunned down by unknown assailants widely believed to be government security forces.

The day before Bugatti was killed, he was with Atty. Ma. Catherince Dannug-Salucon in a hearing at the Regional Trial Court (RTC), Lagawe, Ifugao as counsel for political prisoners Rene Boy Abiva and Virgilio Corpuz. 

Justice for WIlliam Bugatti!

We are enraged over the extrajudicial killing of William Bugatti, a Tuwali and a devoted human rights worker yesterday March 25, 2014, at around 6-7 in the evening. William is a Regional Council Member of the Cordillera Human Rights Alliance-KARAPATAN, a regional Council Member of the Cordillera Peoples Alliance representing the Ifugao Peasant Movement and the Provincial Coordinator of Bayan Muna partylist.  

We condemn this human rights violation in the strongest possible terms.  

Former political prisoner assassinated in Oton town, Iloilo province

At around 6:30 p.m. on March 15, 2014, Romeo Capalla was at the Oton public market when unidentified gunmen shot him at close range. He succumbed to two gunshot wounds in the head, and was pronounced dead on arrival at the Western Visayas Medical Center. He was at the public market to pick up his mother-in-law from her store.

Capalla, 65, was a member of the Board of Directors of the Panay Fair Trade Center (PFTC) and its former manager. The PFTC, a member organization of the International Federation of Alternative Trade, exports certified-organic muscovado sugar and banana chips.

In August 2005, Capalla was arrested on false charges of arson. The said incident was allegedly committed by the New People’s Army in Guimbal, Iloilo. Capalla’s co-acused in the said case was Fernando Baldomero, then town councilor of Oton and was the first victim of extrajudicial killing under the Aquino government. Both Capalla and Baldomero were released after the charges against them were dismissed. Baldomero was killed five years later on July 5, 2010, five days after Aquino took his oath of office.

Call for justice for the victims of killing in Central Luzon

Dear friends,

Please join us in our call for justice for the farmers who were victims of killing and other human rights violations. The farmers are in haciendas owned by big landlords or in haciendas targeted for land conversion for real estate and other commercial purposes.

Arbitrary killing, frustrated killing, and harassment of farmers in Hacienda Dolores, Porac, Pampanga

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