July, 2018

Political prisoners to Duterte: Those in power are the real criminals, terrorists

On Duterte’s 3rd State of the Nation Address (SONA), political prisoners (PPs) from various jails across the country joined their voices to call for justice and demand accountability for the crimes and rights violations perpetrated by the Duterte regime.

As of June 2018, Karapatan documented 509 political prisoners in the country. Of this number, 179 were arrested under Duterte, 118 are sickly, 46 are women, 39 are elderly, 5 are minors, and 6 are consultants of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP). Most of the political detainees come from peasant and indigenous communities who were charged with trumped-up criminal charges.  

On Duterte’s 3rd State of the Nation Address: Stop the attacks against the Filipino people!

“In line with its counterinsurgency program, the Duterte regime kills 2 per week and arrests 20 individuals in the same period – many of the victims are farmers and indigenous peoples. No doubt this figure will be whitewashed to give way to the administration’s conjured version of an imagined state of the nation. The reality of the country under Duterte is tainted with the blood and sufferings of the poor, denied of their rights and continuously being burdened by the government’s repressive and anti-people policies,” said Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay.

International groups express grave concern on PH rights situation

Global civil society alliance CIVICUS and the Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development  (APWLD) expressed concern over the worsening cases of rights violation in the Philippines, citing the recent illegal arrest and detention of 13 human rights defenders in General Santos City, Mindanao last July 4, 2018. While 11 were released on July 6, 2018, two remain detained, facing trumped criminal charges.

On the BI's deportation order for Sr. Fox

“The Bureau of Immigration order being used to justify the persecution of Sr. Patricia Fox is both vague and arbitrary, certainly a dangerous tool for foul-mouthed and tyrannical leaders who fear international solidarity. Sr. Fox deserves to stay in the country, surely more than the parasites in government who have willingly plundered and violated the rights of the majority; and definitely more than pretentious nationalists who might as well give up our territories to US and China. She has sufficiently answered all allegations, remained true to her mission, and expressed her solidarity to the Filipino people,” said Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay. 

Lumad in Surigao del Sur evacuate yet again, military withholding relief

“This is the Duterte regime’s version of peace – terrorizing communities and strengthening military rule over civilians. This trend has progressively worsened under Duterte, with the Armed Forces of the Philippines turning indigenous and peasant communities into their playground for rights abuses. Their unwanted presence in rural areas has once again caused the evacuation of more than a thousand individuals,” said Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay.

 

 

(Photo courtesy of SOS Caraga)

Duterte’s “New Rules” Criminalize Missionary Work

Duterte’s “New Rules” Criminalize Missionary Work

By David Chan

On February 22, 2018, three United Methodist missionaries, Adam Thomas Shaw, Tawanda Chandiwana, and Miracle Osman, participated in an International Fact Finding and Solidarity Mission (IFFSM) to look into the human rights violations in Mindanao. Since their participation in the IFFSM, their targeted persecution has ensued. The Philippine government had been attempting to forfeit the missionary visas of the three, along with Australian nun, Sr. Patricia Anne Fox, because of their participation in activities that the government deems outside the scope of what it considers “missionary work.” 
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Karapatan demands immediate release of 13 rights defenders, dev’t workers arrested in General Santos City

Karapatan decried the arrest of thirteen human rights defenders and church development workers on the evening of July 4, 2018 in General Santos City, during a program consultation of volunteers and partners of the Iglesia Filipino Independiente- Visayas Mindanao Regional Office for Development (IFI-VIMROD) on peasant and Lumad issues at the Mother Francisca Spirituality Center in Radasa St., Brgy. Lagao.

On the reported police strip search demo on a female drug suspect in Makati

Karapatan deplores the dehumanizing strip search of a female drug suspect in a police station in Makati City as an act of cruel and degrading treatment of a person arrested and/or detained. Police personnel who were involved in the said act should be meted out with punishment under the Anti-Torture Law, while their superiors should be investigated as well to look into their accountability, considering the principle of command responsibility under the said law.    

Duterte regime’s road to “peace” is all-out war and terror vs the people

In the past days, officials of the Duterte administration and the Armed Forces of the Philippines took turns in justifying the regime’s full-scale war against the Filipino people and suppression of political dissent, as if the current human rights situation isn’t precarious as it is with the all-out assault on civil liberties and people’s rights. 

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Human and people’s rights catastrophe in PH on Duterte’s 2nd year

Change made a turn for the worse in the two years of the Duterte presidency.

Under Duterte’s rule remains a large army of unemployed and contractual workers paid with a pittance of wages, a people burdened with additional taxes and higher prices of goods and services, millions of peasants displaced by foreign and domestic big businesses and landlords, indigenous people who lost their land from mining companies, and urban and rural poor communities dislocated by his Build, Build, Build programs.