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Families of desaparecidos march to Mendiola

 

Noynoy, where is justice?

Families of desaparecidos called on the Aquino administration to act immediately to surface all victims of enforced disappearances, as they march to Mendiola on the International Day of the Disappeared.  

Led by Desaparecidos (Families of the Disappeared for Justice), families brought masks bearing the faces of the 206 victims disappeared during the Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo regime. 

Desaparecidos deputy secretary general Lorena Santos criticized the continued silence and inaction of the Aquino government on the cases of enforced disappearances. 

“How can we truly believe that Pres. Noynoy Aquino is sincere in resolving cases of human rights violatios, if it continues to be silent on the thousands of human rights violations under Arroyo? How can we be at peace if Arroyo and her former minions who were behind extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances are comfortably sitted in the halls of Congress,” Santos said. 

Victims of Arroyo regime to P-Noy: Hold the perpetrators accountable now!

In commemoration of the International Day of the Disappeared, families of victims of human rights violations under Arroyo under the banner of Hustisya (Victims of Arroyo Regime United for Justice) marched to Mendiola today. 

“We call for the immediate surfacing of the 206 victims of enforced disappearances under Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, at the same time that we call for justice for the 1,206 victims of extrajudicial killings,” said Evangeline Hernandez, spokesperson of Hustisya. 

KARAPATAN warns P-Noy not to wash his hands on Hacienda Luisita issue

The National Council of the human rights watchdog Karapatan joins farmers and supporters in a mass by Bishop Teodoro C. Bacani dedicated to Hacienda Luisita workers at the Santo Domingo Church, and warned President Benigno Aquino III “not to wash his hands” on the controversial land dispute.

KARAPATAN Chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez said, on the eve of a Supreme Court en banc hearing of oral arguments on the case, that “Pres. Aquino should take the initiative to revoke the stock distribution option (SDO) as already decided by the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council in 2005, nullify the sham compromise deal of the Hacienda Luisita Inc. (HLI) management, and immediately implement the long overdue land distribution to farmers and farm workers.

“Not in the name of human rights, not one day more!” – Karapatan

 

On the AFP Extension of Oplan Bantay Laya II

“Not in the name of human rights, not one day more!” – Karapatan

The human rights alliance Karapatan assailed the extension of Oplan Bantay Laya II announced by Armed Forces Chief Lt. Gen. Ricardo David last Sunday.

Karapatan Chairperson Marie Hilao Enriquez scored the AFP for claiming that they would “emphasize the respect and upholding of human rights,” for it is one of the thrusts of President Benigno Aquino III. “This is the height of deception and distortion by the AFP and the President to lull the people into accepting this abominable counter-insurgency strategy which was already found by both local and international bodies to be one of the reasons for the series of killings and enforced disappearances committed against activists and critics of the US-Arroyo regime.  It is now becoming clear that this Aquino II regime is nothing but a continuation of its predecessor in terms of human rights,’’ Enriquez declares.

The Aquino II administration must stop deceiving the people. “Not in the name of human rights,” Enriquez said.  “The bloody record of Oplan Bantay Laya has shown the AFP’s total disregard for human rights.  Its mercenary tradition has shown not even a modicum of respect but rather total contempt of human rights,” she added.

KARAPATAN to PNoy: “Stop the killings Now! Scrap the OBL and don’t embark on another counter-insurgency program”

“It is still the same military in denial mode speaking on the current spate of extrajudicial killings going on in the country,”  Marie Hilao-Enriquez, chairperson of the human rights group Karapatan, said, of AFP spokesman Brigadier General Jose Mabanta’s blanket denial of the AFP’s involvement in the said cases. 

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. 

Human rights groups urge President Noynoy Aquino: Stop the Killings! Stop Human Rights Violations! End Impunity!

While reporting of a successful participation to the 14th Session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva as a member of the Ecumenical Voice Philippine NGO delegation, Marie Hilao-Enriquez, Chairperson of Karapatan Alliance for the Advancement of People's Rights, condemned the continuing extrajudicial killings in the Philippines and called upon president-elect Noynoy Aquino to stop the killings and address the persistent issue of human rights violations in the country.

Karapatan slams moves to prevent CHR investigations on the Morong 43

The human rights alliance Karapatan, along with relatives and supporters of the Morong 43, trooped to the Court of Appeals (CA) hearing on the petition to block the investigations being conducted by the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) on the illegal arrest and detention of the 43 health workers.

On April 24, the 7th Division of the CA ordered the CHR to stop its hearings with a 60-day temporary restraining order, in response to a petition filed by Morong Judge Mangrobang, the judge who approved the defective warrant used to illegally arrest the healthworkers, and Atty. Cyrus Jurado, the lawyer claiming to represent five of the 43 health workers.  “This is preposterous and unacceptable; where will the people now turn to in cases of human rights violations if the courts curtail the mandate of a constitutional body such as the CHR?,” bewailed Karapatan Chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez.

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