[In the news] More Philippine church leaders, rights workers on ‘red list’ -UCAN news

More Philippine church leaders, rights workers on ‘red list’

The “red-tagging” of church leaders and activists has intensified with priests of the Philippine Independent Church included on a new list of people alleged to have ties with communist rebels.

Aside from the priests, the list also included the Rural Missionaries of the Philippines, the Alliance of Concerned Teachers, the Union of Peoples Lawyers, and youth group Kabataan.

The list, containing the names of 19 individuals, including a journalist and his family, was distributed outside the venue of a human rights forum in Cagayan de Oro City in Mindanao last week.

“We fear for our lives and liberty knowing that we are on this list,” said Bishop Felixberto Calang of the Philippine Independent Church whose name was also on the list.

The Protestant prelate said the list is part of a series of “smear efforts,” including the painting of graffiti on the walls of churches in some areas of the southern Philippine region of Mindanao.

“When the police and military can just plant evidence against innocent people they claim are ‘enemies of the state,’ that is lawlessness,” said Bishop Calang.

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