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Rights group condemns 2nd activist killing and ambush of another media person; slams P-Noy's continued silence on EJKs

The human rights alliance Karapatan condemns the killing of Pascual Guevarra, a 78-year old peasant leader in Laur, Nueva Ecija who was shot and killed in his house on Friday, July 9, 2010.

Guevarra is the second activist killed under President Noynoy Aquino’s presidency; we are holding the President responsible for the escalating attacks against activists and media persons.

Also in the evening of the same day, Miguel Belen, a broadcaster in Camarines Sur was ambushed by armed men and remains in critical condition in a hospital in Iriga City.  It is deplorable that attacks against media persons and activists are persisting.

President Aquino's silence on the political killings is giving the military the license to continue targetting unarmed progressive individuals with brazenness and impunity. Up to now, the President has not issued a categorical statement to stop the killings. The wang wang merited a statement in his inaugural speech, and immediately, down the line, the police and military started looking for wangwangs, apprehending violators of the President’s desire even in towns far from Manila.  It is therefore, important that the Commander-in-Chief issues a categorical statement that he wants the killings and other human rights violations stopped. A simple statement will send a signal that he is bent on realizing what he say. 

Rights group condemns 2nd activist killing and ambush of another media person; slams P-Noy's continued silence on EJKs

 

The human rights alliance Karapatan condemns the killing of Pascual Guevarra, a 78-year old peasant leader in Laur, Nueva Ecija who was shot and killed in his house on Friday, July 9, 2010.

Guevarra is the second activist killed under President Noynoy Aquino’s presidency; we are holding the President responsible for the escalating attacks against activists and media persons.

 

 

 

President Aquino must think twice in appointing Rosales as CHR chief -- Karapatan

The human rights watchdog Karapatan expressed dismay over the impending appointment of former Akbayan representative Loretta Ann Rosales as chairperson of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR). 

“Our experience bears out that Ms. Rosales has shown bias against human rights violations victims and advocates such as Karapatan,” Marie Hilao-Enriquez said, Karapatan chairperson.   

Karapatan condemns first political killing under P-Noy

The human rights alliance Karapatan strongly condemns the killing of Bayan Muna-Aklan provincial chairperson Fernando Baldomero who was shot this morning while on his way to bring his child to school. 

Baldomero, who is also a municipal councilor of Lezo, Aklan and at the same time provincial coordinator of the Makabayan Coalition, is the first victim of extrajudicial killing since President Noynoy Aquino was sworn into office. An attempt was made on Baldomero’s life early this year when his house in Bgy. Sta. Cruz Bigaa, Lezo, Aklan was lobbed with a grenade by two men riding in a motorcycle.

According to initial reports, Baldomero was in front of his house, while trying to start his motorcycle to bring his child to school he was shot by two unidentified men.  The attackers were armed with a 9mm pistol and long fire-arms.

Karapatan chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez said that the incident follows the announcement of the new three-year counter-insurgency plan by the newly installed Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Ricardo David.   “Neither Gen. David nor President Noynoy have called to stop the killings and to end the culture of impunity that still prevails,” Enriquez said.

“The lack of declaration from President Noynoy to stop the killings and impunity, coupled by Gen. David’s pronouncement of another deadline to end insurgency, and this new wave of political killings, signals that former president Gloria Arroyo’s counter-insurgency program, Oplan Bantay Laya, is still enforced under Mr. Aquino’s term and has not let up on targeting progressive individuals”, Enriquez said. She also noted that in June, seven individuals were killed, including an Ampatuan massacre witness, and last week, a former lawyer of the Mangudadatus was ambushed. 

Karapatan welcomes Atty. Leila De Lima’s assignment to DOJ post

The human rights alliance Karapatan welcomes the appointment of Commission on Human Rights Chairperson Leila de Lima to the post of Secretary of the Department of Justice (DOJ) in President-elect Noynoy Aquino’s cabinet.

Karapatan chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez lauded CHR Chairperson De Lima for showing heart and sympathy for the victims of human rights violations, and for doing her best to maintain the INDEPENDENCE of the Commission despite being appointed by outgoing President Gloria Arroyo. “We hope that as DOJ Chief, Atty. De Lima will continue asserting the same level of independence as she did while she was in the CHR, refusing to be bullied into subservience and exercising the Commission’s mandate with integrity and courage, ” Hilao-Enriquez said. 

 

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