Freedom of Expression Conference 5 (FreeXP.con)

FREEXP.CON 5

Theme: “MAGPAHAYAG, MAKISANGKOT AT MAGING BAYANI PARA SA KARAPATANG PANTAO!”

BACKGROUND

The right to freedom of speech and expression – the right to speak out, to debate, to criticize, to disseminate information on matters of public importance – is one of the most basic of human rights. It is guaranteed under Article 19 of the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and enshrined in the 1987 Philippine Constitution. Yet the right to speak out, to inform, to report, and to engage in open debate is now being curtailed. This right including other fundamental human rights is under attack by the government and private citizens and groups, and on many fronts including the digital sphere.

Today, the challenges in continuously exercising and defending the right to free speech and expression are unsurmountable under the current political dispensation. There is certainly a systematic and widespread machination to undermine the right to free speech and expression that is being carried by the government and its political allies with the use of punitive laws to control, discredit, punish and silence its critics. Misleading information and hate-driven commentary have been spreading via social media platforms for quite a long time and these are now manipulating public opinion, warping meaningful discourses, and polluting the public moral fabric.

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[Event] Annual Honoring of Martyrs and Heroes | Bantayog ng mga Bayani

#HumanRights #NeverAgain

Annual Honoring of Martyrs and Heroes

We present four more heroes and martyrs of the resistance against the Marcos dictatorship. On November 30, Andres Bonifacio day, we will unveil their names on the Wall of Remembrance.

#NeverAgainNeverForget

https://web.facebook.com/bantayogngmgabayani/photos/a.1008871302466673/4808267292527036/

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[Statement] Palayain si Sally Ujano! | PKKK

#HumanRights #FreeSallyUjano

Palayain si Sally Ujano!

Mariing kinukundina ng Pambansang Koalisyon ng Kababaihan sa Kanayunan (PKKK) ang pagka aresto kay Sally Ujano, isang kilalang child’s rights advocate at isa sa mga unang nagbigay gabay sa aming samahan sa pagsugpo ng karahasan laban sa mga kababaihan. Inaresto ng mga nakasibilyang pulis nitong November 14 si Sally sa kanyang tahanan sa Bulacan. Dinala sya sa Camp Crame, at sa loob din ng araw na iyon ay nagpost ang PNP Region 3 sa Facebook na nagsasabing si Sally ay may kasong rebelyon nuong 2005, at isa sa mga most wanted na lider ng CPP-NPA.


ANG AKUSASYON KAY SALLY UJANO AY ISANG MALAKING KASINUNGALINGAN.

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[From the web] Harry Roque fails in bid for International Law Commission post | GMAnews

#HumanRights #ILC

Harry Roque fails in bid for International Law Commission post

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque failed to obtain a seat in the 34-member International Law Commission (ILC), the body of experts that help develop and codify international law.
advertisement

“My candidature at the ILC was a challenging campaign throughout but we met it head-on. Unfortunately, we did not succeed,” he said in a statement posted on his social media account.

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[From the web] Why the Laud quarry, ‘mass grave’ for DDS victims, haunts Lascañas | RAPPLER.COM

#HumanRights #Killings

Why the Laud quarry, ‘mass grave’ for DDS victims, haunts Lascañas

When a death squad maintained by the mayor of the Philippines’ largest city goes on a killing spree, where do they bury the bodies?

For their biggest dumping ground – where hitmen had confessed to having buried thousands – the notorious Davao Death Squad (DDS) had a six-hectare quarry owned by policeman Bienvenido Laud in Barangay Ma-a.

In an affidavit submitted to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in October 2020, a copy of which was obtained by Rappler, former DDS insider Arturo Lascañas detailed how the Laud quarry had become a “mass grave” for persons whom then-mayor Rodrigo Duterte had ordered them to kill.

Read full article @ https://bit.ly/3oELuPK

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[Event] World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims | KAGULONG

#HumanRights #RoadSafety

Sa ika-21 ng Nobyembre, nananawagan uli ang buong daigdig upang alalahanin ang mga nasawi dahil sa aksidente sa kalsada. Araw-araw dito sa Pilipinas ay humigit-kumulang sa 34 na katao ang namamatay dahil dito.

Kailangan nating ipagtanggol ang karapatang mabuhay! Kailangan nating manawagan ng ligtas na kalsada para sa lahat!

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11th #HumanRights Pinduteros’ Choice Awards

11th #HumanRights Pinduteros’ Choice Awards

“Magpahayag, Makisangkot at Maging Bayani para sa karapatang pantao!”

HR Pinduteros’ Choice Awards – pagkilala at pasasalamat sa mga Bayani ng HR Online.

Sa ika-labing isang taong pagpapasalamat at pagkilala para sa ating mga ka-HR Pinduteros sa kanilang patuloy na pagpapahayag para sa karapatang pantao, inihahandog ng Human Rights Online Philippines o HRonlinePH ang 11th #HumanRights Pinduteros’ Choice Awards.

Sa pamamagitan ng taunan nating pagtitipon na ito ay kinikilala natin ang makabuluhang ambag ng mga indibidwal at grupo para sa pag-mumulat, pagbibigay inspirasyon at pagkilos para sa karapatang pantao.

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[Statement] Convicted tax evader Bongbong Marcos disqualified from running as president claims petition filed with COMELEC

#HumanRights #NeverAgainToTheMarcoses

Convicted tax evader Bongbong Marcos disqualified from running as president claims petition filed with COMELEC

On November 2 2021 a Petition to Cancel or Deny Due Course the Certificate of Candidacy of Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. under Section 78 in relation to Section 74, Article IX of the Omnibus Election Code was filed with the Commission on Elections (COMELEC). The Petitioners represent a cross-section of political detainees, human rights and medical organizations that opposed the Marcos dictatorship.

The Petition points out that Marcos’ Certificate of Candidacy contains multiple false material representations. Specifically, Marcos falsified his Certificate of Candidacy when he claimed that he was eligible to be a candidate for President of the Philippines in the 2022 national elections when in fact he is disqualified from doing so.

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[Off-the-shelf] Ethical Guide for Filipino Journalists | NUJP

#HumanRights #Media

Ethical Guide for Filipino Journalists

The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines remains steadfast in upholding the ethical conduct of journalism in the Philippines.

This year, in its goal, to strengthen the self-regulation of media in the country, the NUJP, in partnership with Internews and USAID, took on the challenge to produce a comprehensive and updated Ethical Guide for Filipino Journalists.

A product of rigorous research and a series of consultations and discussions with fellow Filipino journalists, this document aims to serve as a tool to guide journalists and newsrooms on the ethical conduct of journalism.

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[Right-Up] All Souls’ Day and the Petition for Disqualification of BBM | by Norman Novio

#HumanRights #NeverAgaintoTheMarcoses

All Souls’ Day and the Petition for Disqualification of BBM

Yesterday, All Souls’ Day, which was declared by President Rodrigo Duterte as a Special Working Public Holiday, a group of petitioners from the ranks of political detainees, human rights, and medical organizations that opposed the Marcos dictatorship filed a petition to disqualify Ferdinand Marcos Jr. from running as president in the May 2022 elections.

The Petition to Cancel or Deny Due Course the Certificate of Candidacy of Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. under Section 78 concerning Section 74, Article IX of the Omnibus Election Code was filed with the Commission on Elections (COMELEC), the country’s supreme poll body.

Fr. Christian “Toots” Buenafe, O.Carm. was one of the petitioners and said that Marcos’ Certificate of Candidacy (CoC) is full of false material representations claiming he was eligible to be a candidate for the upcoming national polls when in fact he is not. They claim that BBM is a convicted criminal, ergo, cannot be a candidate. For the record, Marcos was convicted by the Regional Trial Court of Quezon City in a July 27, 1995 Decision for his multiple failures to file income tax returns. Apparently, BBM did not pay his taxes for 4 years so it could be classified as tinted with moral turpitude.

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[From the web] FB is now Meta. And it wants to monetize your whole existence | by James Muldoon

#HumanRights #Meta

Facebook Is Now Meta. And It Wants to Monetize Your Whole Existence.
By James Muldoon

You log on, and you’re herded into a virtual bar to listen to your boss telling jokes. Meanwhile, a metaverse-first real estate company is selling off overpriced property in a virtual London, and gamers are competing for non-fungible tokens. Welcome to the Zuckerverse — a place nobody asked for but in which we may soon all be spending a lot of time.

On Thursday, Facebook changed its name to Meta, as part of a broader shift toward the so-called metaverse — a network of interconnected experiences partly accessed through virtual reality (VR) headsets and augmented reality (AR) devices. In Zuckerberg’s own words, “you can think about the metaverse as an embodied internet, where instead of just viewing content — you are in it.” The most recognizable examples of this in action are virtual office meetings with VR goggles, playing games in an expansive online universe, and accessing a digital layer on top of the real world through AR.

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[Right-Up] In Defense of Madness and Mayhem: A Review of Reconstructing Dutertismo | by Jose Mario De Vega

#HumanRights #Dutertismo

In Defense of Madness and Mayhem: A Review of Reconstructing Dutertismo

This paper is a brief review of Mark Pablo’s article published by ADRiNSTITUTE for Strategic and International Studies in 2017 in a period wherein we could say that ‘Dutertismo’ was at the peak of its power.

The question or the research problem of the author is not to ask what Dutertismo means, as if we already know what this thing or tendency is, but to offer a rereading or a reconstruction of this phenomenon.

As per the author, his research objectives are as follows:
1) Map the political, economic, and social terrain, contextualizing Duterte’s rise to power;
2) Critique the charge that ‘Dutertismo’ is purely a theatrical phenomenon, and
3) Suggest a reinterpretation of ‘Dutertismo’ as a movement aimed at altering the post-Edsa configurations of power and at laying a blueprint for a new order and narrative for the future Philippine states.

Pablo began his exposition by highlighting Professor Quimpo’s analysis of the class division in the Philippines and intertwined it with Professor McCoy’s contention that Philippine post-Edsa politics is nothing more than the collision between the state and politico-economic dynasties.

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[Off-the-shelf] Local Government Powers in Extractive Mining and Other Environmentally Critical Projects | LRC

#HumanRights #Mining

Local Government Powers in Extractive Mining and Other Environmentally Critical Projects

In celebration of Indigenous Peoples’ Month, we’ve come out with a primer on the powers of local government units (LGUs) in mining and other environmentally critical projects.

Designed in an FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) format, it is meant to help LGUs, local communities, and civil society organizations (CSOs) find legal anchors for their environmental causes.

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[Press Release] Church, green groups unite in pushing for pro-people and pro-environment leaders in the May 2022 elections | ATM

#HumanRights #Mining

Church, green groups unite in pushing for pro-people and pro-environment leaders in the May 2022 elections

Environmental human rights defenders announced in a press conference today that it will actively push for the election of pro-people and pro-environment leaders in the May 2022 elections, especially those who are already allies and champions of green bills. They also said they will engage in the elections by exposing corporate donors from the extractives industry who are funding candidates for electoral positions.

Jaybee Garganera, Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) National Coordinator, said that “politicians funded by mining companies are already compromised.” He clarified that “when elected, these candidates will certainly repay their political debt and push for the agenda of large-scale mining at the expense of the public they are sworn to serve.”

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[People] Three Catastrophes are Already upon the World | by Fr. Shay Cullen

#HumanRights #ClimateChange

Three Catastrophes are Already upon the World
Shay Cullen
29 October 2021

We must face the unpleasant and painful truth about what is happening to the planet and our lives. You may think that the climate catastrophe facing mankind is global warming but in fact, there are at least three catastrophes behind the climate change disaster.

The first one is the effect of CO2, nitrous oxide, and methane that are covering the planet like a blanket and locking in the heat of the sun. It is like putting the planet in a glass-covered greenhouse. The heat is causing devastating droughts, leaving millions of people without food. This is causing massive migration of the hungry populations from the South to the North. The earth and forests are burning down. In Russia, Europe, the USA, and Australia, enormous forest fires destroy all before them.

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[Statement] Stop the Unmitigated Public Fund Hemorrhage ! | ASSERT

#HumanRights #Teachers

Stop the Unmitigated Public Fund Hemorrhage !

Restore our Hard-earned Taxpayers’ Contributions to their Originally Intended
People Beneficiaries !

So summarize the calls of our teacher representatives from the Action and Solidarity for the Empowerment of Teachers (assert) for the judicious use of scarce public resources who troop to the Department of Education at ULTRA Pasig today, October 27 to present to Secretary Leonor Briones the 1446 first batch of public school teachers who either tested positive and/or died of COVID from March16, 2020 when Proclamation 929 placed the entire Luzon and parts of Visayas and Mindanao under state of calamity due to the pandemic.

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[Event] #CourageON: The shrinking spaces for indigenous women in the Philippines | Lilak

#HumanRights #IndigenousPeoples #Women

The shrinking spaces for indigenous women in the Philippines

Seventh episode of the “#CourageON: Tumindig, Makialam, Kumilos” community show, where we discuss the plight of indigenous women from different parts of the Philippines and indigenous peoples’ rights advocates.

As October marks National Indigenous Peoples Month, we take this opportunity to hear the stories and experiences of indigenous women. What are the unique challenges that indigenous women face during the pandemic? What can we do to provide more support to them?

Titled “#CourageON: The shrinking spaces for indigenous women in the Philippines,” the seventh episode of the community show features panel discussions with indigenous women and indigenous peoples’ rights advocates. It discusses struggles on the ground and possible ways we can help provide more opportunities for indigenous women to grow their skills and protect their rights.

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[Event] Youth Against Destructive Mining: Cultural Night 2021 | ATM

#HumanRights #Mining

ATM Youth Network invites you to watch the event “Youth Against Destructive Mining: Cultural Night 2021” at 8PM, October 26, 2021

The cultural night will provide an avenue for participants and relative networks to share each others’ sentiments with regards to mining in a fruitful yet informational entertainment event.

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[From the web] DOJ’s review of the drug war’s extrajudicial executions veils truth on Duterte’s central policy of killing | iDEFEND

#HumanRights #Killings

DOJ’s review of the drug war’s extrajudicial executions veils truth on Duterte’s central policy of killing

Back in April 2019, the Supreme Court ordered the Solicitor General to release to petitioners, all records of extrajudicial killings related to the government’s war on drugs. It turned down the appeal of the Solicitor General to keep the files with the government for reasons of national security. The petitioners-FLAG and CENTERLAW, should have received the records of at least five thousand cases of killings during police operations. The petitioners have also asked the Supreme Court to declare the war on drugs unconstitutional. The PNP and the Solicitor General eventually sent copies of what CENTERLAW described as “rubbish” documents, mostly unrelated to the drug war.

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[Statement] Philippines: Government review a woefully insufficient response to victims of “war on drugs” | AI

#HumanRights #Killings

Philippines: Government review a woefully insufficient response to victims of “war on drugs”

The Philippine’s Department of Justice’s (DOJ) recently released matrix – containing limited information from its review of a mere 52 cases among thousands of deaths during police anti-drug operations – is another deeply disappointing indicator of the continuing lack of accountability for the thousands of unlawful killings and other crimes under international law, and human rights violations committed under the so-called “war on drugs”. The review is woefully inadequate, fails to meet international standards, and is a distressingly belated effort for the thousands of families in their grueling quest for justice. Amnesty International remains concerned that the Philippine authorities, including DOJ’s current review, continue to show no meaningful progress toward ensuring access to justice and reparations for victims, nor provides a clear commitment to end its bloody crackdown on illicit drugs.

This investigation by the DOJ comes amid further domestic and international demands for accountability for crimes under international law and human rights violations committed as part of the “war on drugs” launched by the Duterte administration in 2016. On 15 September 2021, the pre-trial chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) announced that it has authorized the Office of the Prosecutor to open an investigation into crimes against humanity in the context of the drug war and also those in Davao City by the alleged Davao Death Squad from 2011 to 2016. The UN Human Rights Council, while falling short of mandating an investigative mechanism, recently provided a grim update on the country’s human rights situation as part of the High Commissioner for Human Rights’ report in September this year. Moreover, within the country itself, there are increasing calls from civil society and the public for candidates in the upcoming May 2022 national elections to condemn and propose more humane and human rights-compliant alternatives to address the health and human rights impacts of the use and sale of drugs.

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[Right-Up] A Review and Commentaries on The Early Duterte Presidency in the Philippines by Professor Mark R. Thompson | by Jose Mario De Vega

#HumanRights #Politics

A Review and Commentaries on The Early Duterte Presidency in the Philippines by Professor Mark R. Thompson

This article of Professor Thompson published in 2016 by Journal of Current Southeast Asian Affairs aims to give a critical analysis of what the Duterte administration will be like. I could say that he is indeed a visionary and early on he clearly saw accurately how brutal and hideous the said regime would be.

Rodrigo R. Duterte has “stuck to his guns” in carrying out his campaign pledge to launch a violent anti-drug campaign. He fulfilled his promise of making the sharks at the Manila Bay fat due to the vicious, relentless, organized, simultaneous and nefarious brutal “War on Drugs” in a national scale. This is the upgraded version of the Davao model or template of mass murder.

Duterte’s electoral victory is an irony, by virtue of the fact that “six years of political stability and high growth under the relatively liberal and supposedly reformist administration of President Benigno “Noynoy” S. Aquino, III.”

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[People] Pedophiles Abuse Children while Court of Appeals Sleeps | by Fr. Shay Cullen

#HumanRights #Children

Pedophiles Abuse Children while Court of Appeals Sleeps
Shay Cullen
22 October 2021

The recent decision of the Department of Education (DepEd) to dismiss for Grave Misconduct from the teaching profession Franco N. Aranas, a teacher in New Cabalan High School, Olongapo City should have been a swift decision to protect children and see justice done. However, it has taken almost three years before the decision was made to dismiss the abusive teacher who sexually abused his students. Yet this teacher, Franco N. Aranas, while found guilty for Grave Misconduct by the DepEd’s Regional Director, May B. Eclar, can continue teaching in the same school until the dismissal from service is confirmed by Secretary Leonor Briones of the DepEd. We earnestly hope that Secretary Briones acts speedily to confirm the decision of the Regional Director to protect children and see justice is done. The DepEd must not harbor a child abuser among its ranks.

What is wrong with the system where it is clear justice delayed is justice denied, a system that favors the sex abusers and ignores traumatized children? It casts a dark shadow over the institutions. The teacher was accused of sexually abusing three minor students, one 14 and two 15 respectively, in the Sunshine Lodge near the Victory Liner station in Olongapo City on two separate occasions in June and August 2018. This place ought to be investigated for enabling human trafficking and child abuse, violations of law.

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[Statement] BIDA BIDA SA SAYA | SPARK

#HumanRights #Workers

BEEAST EMPLOYERS

BIDA BIDA SA SAYA

Kamakailan lamang inilabas ng Forbes Magazine ang listahan nila ng ‘di umano world’s “best employers” para sa taong 2021. Sa 750 na mga kumpanya, iba’t ibang higanteng korporasyon ang napabilang dito kagaya na lang ng Samsung Electronics, IBM, Microsoft, Amazon, at Apple na limang nangungunang employers sa nasabing listahan. Kabilang rin sa naturang listahan ang binansagang “3 Philippine blue chips” Jollibee Food Corporation sa pwestong 256th habang ang Ayala Corp. ay nasa 487th at Aboitiz Equity Ventures naman sa 665th.

Habang ang mga kumpanyang ito ay humahalakhak sa tuwa ay marami pa ring empleyado mula sa Jollibee Foods Corporation ang patuloy na nagdurusa base na rin sa kanilang mabigat na karanasan sa kanilang pagtatrabaho sa dambuhalang kumpanyang ito. Ang karaniwang hinaing ng mga empleyado rito ay ang labis na trabaho ngunit kakarampot na sahod at ang hindi natatapos na kontraktwalisasyon na siyang lubid-sakal sa mga trabahador ng JFC.

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[Event] Launching of the ATM Mining Hell Week

#HumanRights #Environment

Launching of the ATM Mining Hell Week

Every March and September, Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) embarks on a Mining Hell Week (MHW) to surface the issues surrounding destructive large-scale mining and its impact on mining-affected communities.

The March MHW is to denounce the continued implementation of the flawed Philippine Mining Act, while the September MHW is to counter the narrative of the mining industry led by the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (COMP) to entice more investors and companies to dig minerals in the Philippines.

This September 2021, the COMP did not organize a mining conference. Nevertheless, ATM deems it crucial to counter the pro-mining stance of the Duterte regime and the agenda of the COMP in the coming elections. ATM will challenge the proposed continuity of exploiting the country’s natural resources at the expense of nature and marginalized communities.

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[From the web] Philippines Loses Staunch Rights Defender | Human Rights Watch

#HumanRights #ChitoGascon

Philippines Loses Staunch Rights Defender | Human Rights Watch

Philippines Loses Staunch Rights Defender
Chito Gascon Led Commission on Human Rights During Trying Years
By Carlos H. Conde
Senior Philippines Researcher
Human Rights Watch

The Philippines has lost a beloved human rights defender. Jose Luis Martin Gascon, known to all as “Chito,” who had chaired the governmental Commission on Human Rights since 2015, died October 9 from complications due to Covid-19, his family said. He was 57.

Friends and allies in the human rights movement mourned Gascon’s passing. “The country lost a dedicated public servant who never cowered in fear in asserting people’s rights and civil liberties,” said Fides Lim, spokesperson of Kapatid, a group advocating for the rights of political prisoners. “Amid the challenges faced by the CHR … he carried on with dignity, strength and courage,” said Jacqueline Ann de Guia, Gascon’s colleague at the commission. Even the military, often the target of commission investigations, paid its respects.

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[People] Children are the Most Important of All- Jesus | by Fr. Shay Cullen

#HumanRights #Children

Children are the Most Important of All- Jesus | by Fr. Shay Cullen
10 October 2021

The attention of most adults is primarily focused on what they consider to be the most important reality in the world- themselves, especially many clerics. Yet there is one overriding unassailable truth that stands above all else in the teaching of the founder of Christianity, Jesus of Nazareth.

The truth that 2.382 billion Christians, including 1.329 billion Roman Catholics, have supposedly bound themselves to accept and obey is that children are the most important in the Kingdom of God. To accept, recognize and affirm a child with that exalted status and dignity is to accept Jesus himself.

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[From the web] Opinion: Duterte is worried about the ICC. He should be. | by Carlos Conde

#HumanRights #Killings

Opinion: Duterte is worried about the ICC. He should be. | by Carlos H. Conde

Clarita Alia remains anguished, nearly 20 years after I first heard her express her grief.

“His name was Danilo Lugay,” she told me over the phone recently from Davao City, in the southern Philippines. Police killed Lugay in September 2020 during a drug raid; a news report of the killing said he had fought back and police officers shot him. Lugay, 28, was the grandchild of Alia’s sister Naneth.

Alia’s voice cracked as she described what happened — the same pained voice that I heard when I interviewed her in 2002 for a report on the killing of her sons Richard, Christopher and Bobby, all teenagers. Assailants later murdered a fourth son, Fernando, in 2007. This unimaginable family tragedy gave Alia, a vegetable vendor who lives in a slum community, the label of poster mother for the city’s bloody “war on drugs,” in which police use extrajudicial executions instead of prosecutions as a primary method of punishing criminal suspects.

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[From the web] Congratulations, Maria and Rappler. You have made the country proud | LnM

#HumanRights #PressFreedom

Congratulations, Maria and Rappler. You have made the country proud

Laban ng Masa joins the country in celebrating Maria Ressa’s being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, along with Russian journalist Dimitry Muratov. Maria and the news and opinion outlet she headed up, Rappler, have been in the forefront of the defense of freedom of the press. For continuing to expose the crimes of the Duterte regime, Ressa and Rappler were subjected to legal persecution and attempts at political annihilation and economic asphyxiation by the administration.

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[Statement] On the passing of CHR Chair Gascon | PMCJ

#HumanRights #ChitoGascon

𝐒𝐓𝐀𝐓𝐄𝐌𝐄𝐍𝐓 𝐎𝐍 𝐓𝐇𝐄 𝐏𝐀𝐒𝐒𝐈𝐍𝐆 𝐎𝐅 𝐂𝐇𝐑 𝐂𝐇𝐀𝐈𝐑 𝐆𝐀𝐒𝐂𝐎𝐍

The Philippine Movement for Climate Justice mourns the passing of Commission for Human Rights Chair Jose Luis Martin “Chito” Gascon, who was a steady ally in the fight for Climate Justice and Human Rights.

Chito led his inquiry into the effects of climate change to human rights through discussions with petitioners and victims of Climate Catastrophe in the Philippines, as well as scientists and experts on climate change.

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[Statement] Passage of UN Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution recognizing the right to a safe, healthy and sustainable environment | ATM

#HumanRights #Environment

Passage of UN Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution recognizing the right to a safe, healthy and sustainable environment

Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) welcomes the recent passage of the UN Human Rights Council recognizing the right to a safe, health and sustainable environment, in Geneva.
While the resolution is not binding to all member-states, this sends a strong message to all countries on the urgency of addressing climate change impacts and listening to the demands of the most vulnerable countries as we face greater risks especially in the midst of this pandemic.

ATM believes that the Philippine government must immediately pass domestic laws and national policies that will subscribe and fulfill this mandate. It is necessary to recall that the 1987 Philippine Constitution already recognizes this under Article 2, Section 16 which states “The State shall protect and advance the right of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature”.

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[Statement] Pagpupugay at pasasalamat sa buhay na inialay sa pagtatanggol ng karapatang pantao | iDEFEND

#HumanRights #ChitoGascon

Pagpupugay at pasasalamat sa buhay na inialay sa pagtatanggol ng karapatang pantao

Nagluluksa ang iDEFEND kabilang ang komunidad ng mga human rights defenders sa biglang pagyao ng Chairperson ng Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines na si José Luis Martín C. Gascón. Kilala bilang Chair Chito, saksi ang iDEFEND sa kanyang dakilang buhay at paninindigan para sa kalayaan, demokrasya at karapatang pantao. Nakakadalo siya sa ating general assembly upang makipagtalakayan sa mga usapin ng ating bansa at himukin ang ibayong pagkilos, pagharap sa mga pagsubok at pagkakaisa.

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[Press Release] KWENTO NATIN ‘TO: Catch these events and be inspired in reclaiming the stories of our nation as we near the 2022 elections | ACTIVE VISTA

#HumanRights #AVFest2021

KWENTO NATIN ‘TO: Catch these events and be inspired in reclaiming the stories of our nation as we near the 2022 elections

With the theme Kwento Natin ‘To: Reclaiming the Stories of our Nation, human rights organization DAKILA jam-packed the Active Vista International Human Rights Festival (AVIHRF) 2021 with events, forums, and film screenings that tell the stories — real and imagined — of our fellow Filipinos. One of the festival’s forums, Press in Distress: Will Independent Journalism Survive in SEA?, also witnessed a historical moment when speaker Maria Ressa, Rappler CEO and president, received the news of her being the first-ever Filipino to win the Nobel Peace Prize live during the forum.

As the national elections draw near — when warring narratives try to fill our consciousness — DAKILA and Active Vista shall continue to bring forward events on the last two days of the festival that will contribute to shaping and reclaiming the narrative of our nation come the 2022 elections.

So as the festival closes on October 10, invite your friends and family members! We’ve got an epic line-up of relevant events to fill your weekend!

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[Statement] CHR spokesperson, Atty. Jacqueline Ann de Guia, on the passing of CHR Chairperson Chito Gascon

#HumanRights #ChitoGascon

Statement of CHR spokesperson, Atty. Jacqueline Ann de Guia, on the passing of CHR Chairperson Chito Gascon

It is with deepest sorrow that we announce the passing of Chairperson Jose Luis Martin “Chito” Gascon. He passed away early this Saturday morning, 9 October 2021, due to Covid-19 complications. He was 57.

At a time of unprecedented human rights challenges, Chair Chito courageously and steadfastly upheld the constitutional mandate of the Commission. Amidst the unrelenting attacks against the institution and to him personally, he was unwavering and unflinching in fighting for the universal values of freedom, truth, and justice that are essential in the pursuit of human rights. He was undaunting in the fight for human rights, rule of law, and democracy out of deep reverence to the equal rights and dignity of all.

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[Press Release] ATING GURO to file Nomination for Partylist Elections

#HumanRights #Teachers

ATING GURO to file Nomination for Partylist Elections

Teachers’ group ATING GURO Partylist will file its certificate of nomination as well as the individual CONA of its nominees today, October 7.

This despite the Comelec’s initial denial of their petition for accreditation to allow them to participate in next year’s partylist elections. On June 25, the Comelec Second Division dismissed the instant petition filed by the party for two grounds, first that the petition signed by the party’s Public Information Officer (PIO) designated by the party’s governing board as certified by its Chairperson and Secretary-General. And that the party failed to prove that majority of its members belong to the sector it wishes to represent- teachers, active and retired, public and private and their dependents.

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[Press Release] Low wages, attacks on workers rights, hinder fulfillment of decent work agenda | EILER

#HumanRights #Workers

Low wages, attacks on workers rights, hinder fulfillment of decent work agenda – EILER

The country still lags behind on the Decent Work Agenda, according to Labor NGO Ecumenical Institute for Labor Education and Research (EILER).

As the domestic employment crisis deepens, more and more workers are forced to engage in irregular, precarious or intermittent employment with lower wages. Widespread joblosses, rampant contractualization, and inadequate decent job opportunities with living wages, are worsened by the militaristic pandemic response and intensified repression against trade union and human rights.

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[Event] Killing State: Confronting the Normalization of State Violence in the Philippines | PAHRA

#HumanRights #Killings #UNHRC48th

Killing State: Confronting the Normalization of State Violence in the Philippines

The Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA), Fastenopfer, Franciscans International (FI), and the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) would like to invite your organization or representatives to the “Killing State: Confronting the Normalization of State Violence in the Philippines” on Thursday, October 7, 2021 at 5PM Philippine time.

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[Event] ‘Press in Distress: Will Independent Journalism Survive In SEA?’ | DAKILA/ACTIVE VISTA

#HumanRights #PressFreedom

‘Press in Distress: Will Independent Journalism Survive In SEA?’

It’s not just in the Philippines. Cracking down on press freedom is a tactic used by other governments with authoritarian tendencies, including those of our neighbors Indonesia and Malaysia. We can push back—as one. In Press in Distress: Will Independent Journalism Survive in SEA?, media organizations and press freedom advocates from all three countries will come together in a live forum to discuss how we all can work together to overcome local and regional threats to press freedom.

DAKILA, Active Vista, Rappler (Philippines), Aliansi Jurnalis Independen (Indonesia), Centre for Independent Journalism (Malaysia), Freedom Film Network (Malaysia), and Gerakan Media Merdeka (Malaysia) invite you to ‘Press in Distress: Will Independent Journalism Survive In SEA?’, a simultaneous regional forum on the state of the press in Southeast Asia on October 8, 2021, Friday, 4:00 pm.

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[Statement] More than flowers and praises, teachers deserve dignity | TDC

#HumanRights #Teachers

More than flowers and praises, teachers deserve dignity
(Statement for World Teachers’ Day 2021)

This school year will be the second chapter of Philippine education under the pandemic. Last September 13, a new school year was, according to the DEpEd, successfully opened. But we have to forgo most of the excitement that accompany school openings.

Only a month earlier, new cases of infection hovered in the vicinity of the dreaded 20K per day, a streak of record highs Filipinos could only watch with their eyes. Then came the announced pilot implementation of face-to-face classes in some 120 schools that seems to have miraculously “managed” the Covid-19 inflation somewhat.

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[Event] The Rise Against Reprisals: An Online Forum on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders in the Philippines | PAHRA

#HumanRights #ProtectHRDs

The Rise Against Reprisals: An Online Forum on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders in the Philippines

The Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA), Fastenopfer, Franciscans International (FI), and the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) present The Rise Against Reprisals: An Online Forum on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders in the Philippines on Monday, October 4, 2021, at 5PM Philippine time.

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[From the web] Int’l community must support independent investigative mechanism to end attacks on civil society | CIVICUS

#HumanRights #StopTheAssault

Philippines: International community must support independent investigative mechanism to end attacks on civil society

New research on the state of civic freedoms in the Philipines

CIVICUS, the global civil society alliance, continues to call on the UN Human Rights Council to establish an independent investigative mechanism to address human rights violations and abuses in the Philippines to further accountability and justice. A new brief published today, shows that one year on from the adoption of a profoundly weak resolution at the Council, serious civic freedoms violations continue to occur, creating a chilling effect within civil society.

The CIVICUS Monitor has documented the arbitrary arrest and detention of human rights defenders and activists on fabricated charges. In a number of instances, the activists have been vilified and red-tagged – labelled as communists or terrorists – in relation to their work prior to their arrest. There have also been reports of evidence planted by the police and military forces to justify arrests or violence against activists.

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[People] Torture and Abuse of Children in Jails | by Fr. Shay Cullen

#HumanRights #Torture #Children

Torture and Abuse of Children in Jails
Shay Cullen
24 September 2021

The unpleasant truths about the torture and abuse of children behind bars are the truths that may not set us free from guilt, apathy, and indifference. It is not only in the Philippines’ Bahay Pag-Asa, youth detention jails, that children and youth are maltreated and abused in detention but also in many countries. Treating youth as criminals has a life-long traumatic impact on them. One thing for sure is the loss of trust and respect for the adult world of authority that allows them to be abused. As the saying goes, “Abuse a child and you make an enemy.”

In Cambodia, last June, Kak Sovann Chhay, an autistic 16-year old Cambodian teenager following the human rights activism of his jailed father, was jailed. Kak Sovann Chhay sent a message on Telegram to government supporters that were considered insulting to government officials. The police broke into his house without a warrant. He was handcuffed, arrested, beaten and jailed in the adult jail of the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh. His mother is not allowed to visit him. A lawyer has and reports squalid conditions not fit for an animal. UN officials have been alerted and expressed urgent concern for violations of his human rights. He is facing two years in jail in the notorious sub-human conditions of a Cambodian prison. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-58588022

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[Statement] Pro-people and rights-based COVID-19 response is needed, MAG demands for a comprehensive COVID-19 pandemic response | MAG

#HumanRights #HealthWorkers #COVID19ph

MAG Statement
Pro-people and rights-based COVID-19 response is needed, MAG demands for a comprehensive COVID-19 pandemic response
September 3, 2021

More than a year in lockdown, the Philippine government still needs to understand that the imposition of wide-scale lockdowns will not suffice in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. By September 1, 2021, the Philippines recorded a total of two (2) million COVID-19 cases. With a population of 109 million people, only around 33 million doses have been administered, with 13.7 million individuals fully vaccinated, and 19.3 million got their 1st dose, as of August 29, 2021.

As the Philippine government continues to fall behind in supporting the overwhelmed health system, more and more lives of Filipinos are put at risk. The recent issue on misuse and underutilization of DOH funds and questionable COVID-19 supplies procurement, involving PhP 67 billion worth of COVID-19 funds has raised concerns on corruption within the health department. At the same time, reports of patients not able to access health services, whether for COVID-19 or not, due to overcapacity of hospitals have become common. The government needs to hasten crafting solutions in accordance with these realities in the grassroots and the health facilities. Specifically, this may include provision of additional life support equipment (e.g. ventilators and hospital oxygen supply), establishment of systematic contact tracing, integration of local and national referral systems such as the One Hospital Command Center to effectively coordinate COVID19 and non COVID19 cases, as well as faster vaccine rollouts.

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URGENT: Early Notice Regarding the Possibility of the Persecution of the Executive Coordinator of KontraS and Lokataru, Fatia Maulidiyanti and Haris Azhar | KONTRAS

URGENT: Early Notice Regarding the Possibility of the Persecution of the Executive Coordinator of KontraS and Lokataru, Fatia Maulidiyanti and Haris Azhar

The Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS)—a human rights non-governmental organization based in Jakarta, Indonesia— would like to give early notice for accommodating safe space for the possibility of the persecution of Executive Director of Lokataru, Haris Azhar, and Coordinator of KontraS, Fatia Maulidiyanti.

On August 26, 2021, the Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment, Luhut Binsar Panjaitan, gave a subpoena to Haris Azhar and Fatia Maulidiyanti through their attorney Juniver Girsang & Partners regarding a talk show on Haris Azhar’s youtube channel with the title “Ada Lord Luhut dibalik Relasi Ekonomi-Ops Militer Intan Jaya!! Jenderal BIN Juga Ada!!” (There is Lord Luhut behind the Economic Relations-Military Operations Intan Jaya!! The General of the State Intelligence Agency is also there!!).

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[Statement] on the murdered human rights lawyer, Rex Fernandez | by Bishop Alminaza

Bishop Alminaza statement on the murdered human rights lawyer, Rex Fernandez

“There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” – John 15:13

On behalf of the Visayas Clergy Discernment Group (VCDG), a 2008 CBCP initiative to address social concerns, I express our grief over the senseless murder of human rights lawyer Rex Fernandez. He was killed last August 26, 2021 in Cebu City.

Lawyer Rex Fernandez, a former Redemptorist seminarian, had a heart for the people and had touched so many lives.

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[Tula] Pakikiisa sa laban ng health workers | ni Greg Bituin Jr.

PAKIKIISA SA LABAN NG HEALTH WORKERS

sa mga health workers kami’y sadyang nakikiisa
sa isyu nila, sampu ng aking mga kasama
upang itaguyod ang mga kapakanan nila
at kami’y sasama sa kanilang kilos-protesta

ipakita ang matagal na nilang mga hinaing
na ibigay na ang benepisyo nila, gayundin
ang hazard pay nila, allowance para sa pagkain
tirahan, transportasyon, special risk allowance din

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[From the web] Victims and their families will engage a justice system that they can trust | iDEFEND

Victims and their families will engage a justice system that they can trust- iDEFEND

The report of the ICC registry indicating an overwhelming support of victims and their families towards an investigation into the war on drugs by the International Criminal Court, proves the lack of credibility of the Philippine system to provide justice to more than thirty thousand cases of extrajudicial killings in the country.

According to the Victims’ Participation and Reparations Section of the registry, there had been more than 200 submissions to the ICC supporting the request of the prosecutor to launch a formal investigation into the human rights violations in the country. The VPRS cited that some reasons given by the victims are the reign of impunity entrenched by the President, the unending trauma that they endure, and their conviction that their relatives did not fight back against authorities.

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[Right-Up] Sino ang mga Bayani at mga Bangag, Bulag at Talipandas ng Bayang ito? | ni Jose Mario De Vega

Sino ang mga Bayani at mga Bangag, Bulag at Talipandas ng Bayang ito?

Sa kanyang paskil sa Facebook noong Agosto 25 ay sinabi ni G. Jose ang mga sumusunod:

“In these perilous times we need heroes. Those young NPA rebels killed by this country’s Armed Forces—whatever their personal achievements, however their courage, are not Filipino heroes. They fought to destroy this Republic in their protracted war. Was Ninoy Aquino a hero? He had murky connections that provoke this question. His massive funeral—never in our history has such event occurred. Is this enough to anoint him? Our thousands of workers who left this country that cannot sustain them—how truly heroic are they? Our frontline health workers—fatigued, sometimes underpaid—many have died—how do we recognize their heroism? In my novel Po-on, the fictional Mabini declares—“the heroes are the foot soldiers, the peasants who produce our food.” Now, look at the mirror and ask yourself, “Have I toiled, suffered and sacrificed something precious for Filipinas? You may not know it, friend, but our unhappy country needs you.”

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[Statement] The Importance of Eliminating Enforced Disappearance in Asia | by Asia Alliance Against Torture

Joint Statement on the International Day of the Disappeared: The Importance of Eliminating Enforced Disappearance Practices in Asia
Asia Alliance Against Torture
August 30, 2021

Today, on the occasion of International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, the Asia Alliance Against Torture (A3T) condemns the practice of enforced disappearances that continues to occur in Asia. It is a cruel practice that perpetuates impunity, where the government shows no political will to investigate and solve cases of enforced disappearance. Marking today’s annual commemoration of the Day of the Disappeared, the A3T would like to highlight the importance of eliminating enforced disappearance practices in Asia.

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[Statement] AFAD Commemorates the UN International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances

AFAD Commemorates the UN International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances
30th August, 2021

Manila: Today, on the occasion of International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, the Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances (AFAD) remembers the victims across the globe and extends solidarity to the families of the disappeared and countless human rights defenders fighting to put an end to impunity amid great challenges. According to the United Nations, enforced disappearance is more than “a human rights violation against an individual”. Enforced disappearances affect the entire family of the victim and is “used as a strategy to spread terror within the society”.

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