minorities file cases at the GRP-NDFP CARHRIHL monitoring committee;
hit Duterte’s failure to push talks forward
September 18, 2017
QUEZON CITY – On
the second week of the Lakbayan 2017, representatives of National
Minorities are filing complaints against the Armed Forces of the
Philippines (AFP) for violations of the Comprehensive Agreement on
Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL).
The delegation trooped to the Philippine government section of the
GRP-NDFP Joint Monitoring Committee on CARHRIHL.
SANDUGO criticized Pres.
Duterte for the failure to stand by its commitment to implement
CARHRIHL and has, instead, waged an all-out war and declared martial
law, which violates the 1998 agreement.
“Pres. Duterte has driven
the peace talks down the drain by insisting on a ceasefire ahead of
the agreement on social and economic reforms and in total disregard
of the CARHRIHL,” said Jerome Aba, co-chairperson of Sandugo.
Among the cases to be
filed are violations committed in relation to the Marawi siege and
the government’s implementation of all-out war/martial law:
- The killing of the Lumad
youth Obillo Bay-ao who was killed by members of the paramilitary
group Alamara and CAFGU on September 5, 2017. Bay-ao is a student of
a Lumad school, Salugpungan Learning Center, in Talaingod, Davao del
- The case of a 74
year-old Marcos Aggalao of Kalinga province who died while in
detention on Sept. 12, 2017. A veteran of the anti-Chico dam
struggle, Aggalao was arrested on September 2016 and suffered stroke
thrice while in jail. At the time of hisarrest, Aggalao has
dementia, pneumonia and hypertension.
- Extrajudicial killings (EJK),
illegal arrests and detention, harassment and threat and divestment
of properties among the Maranao in Marawi.
Also included are 14 cases
of EJKs, 10 cases of illegal arrest and detention, harassment,
threat and intimidation, and cases of violation of domicile,
physical and mental torture. Also included are violations committed
in the Caraga and Negros regions and those incurred by Consunji
mining in the South Cotabato-Sultan Kudarat area.
Duterte’s allout war/martial law and failure to push peace talks
“Duterte’s war against the
national minorities and the poor majority of the people does not
address the root causes of the armed conflict but only adds fuel to
the ongoing people’s war,” said Aba.
Thousands of national
minorities are suffering the brunt of the social and economic crisis
sweeping the country. They are further burdened by the entry of
foreign monopoly capitalist corporations, endorsed by government and
a fascist military, encroaching on their territories and ancestral
Pres. Duterte has dashed
all hoped that a Joint Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms can
be signed. The agreement could have addressed the reforms needed by
the Filipino People, including the demands of the national
minorities for rights and right to self-determination, and for the
protection of their territories and ancestral lands against plunder.
“As the fight for their
economic and political rights continues, so is the pressure by a
fascist military defending landlords, companies and foreign monopoly
corporations getting bigger,” Aba added.
Sandugo calls on the
people to raise the call for the resumption of the peace talks even
as they advance their struggle, with the rest of the Filipino
people, for a just and meaningful peace in the country.