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Tag Archives: Jonas Burgos

We are the eyes that see,
the ears that listen,
the voice that tell their stories.
We are Melissa Roxas.

We fight for the people,
give medical care for the
sick and poor,
protect those in danger,
seek those who are missing,
feed the hungry.
We are Melissa Roxas.

We are silenced,

We are Melissa Roxas.
We are Jonas Burgos,
Sherlyn Cadapan,
Karen Empeno,
and many others.

The things that we have in common with Melissa are the same fire and passion to help those who are in need. We strive to provide the basic human rights like health care and fare wages/jobs  that our governments have vowed to provide but cannot.

Does the government view helping people as a threat that they have to use the military to intimidate and abduct people?

Witnesses have testified that hooded men on motorcycles with heavily armed weapons patrol around the areas and making their way to where their targets are. A van usually follows the caravan  of motorcycles. They grab their targets, force them into the van and drive off.

Melissa is one of few who have surfaced from their abductors, however,  many of the desaparecidos (abducted) still remain missing. Many of those who escaped say they were tortured, sexually abused, beatened and more.

For more information and updates on the human rights issue in the Philippines click: Karapatan: Alliance for the Advancement of People’s Rights

These are public service advertisements have been brought to you by:

Southern Tagalog Exposure and the Free Jonas Burgos Movement

In these films there is tribute to a poet, people talking about their lost loved ones & info about abductions and political killings. There are some videos that have English translation, however, not all of the videos are translated.

Rights Background: RIGHTS is a pioneering compilation of independently produced and human rights themed short films/public service advertisements (PSAs). Initiated originally by artists involved with Southern Tagalog Exposure and the Free Jonas Burgos Movement, RIGHTS exposes the incessant human rights hostilities in the Philippines. It is an open and continuing call for filmmakers to participate in the growing movement to defend and uphold human rights. However, timely of its launching on September 21 last year, blatant state censorship rendered RIGHTS’ non-exhibition atIndie Sine following MTRCB’s X rating to some of the PSAs. Filmmakers decried MTRCB’s X-rating on RIGHTS as a form of violation of freedom of expression, validating their opinion on the human rights situation in the Philippines. Yet despite the censorship, organizers and filmmakers were determined to continue to reproduce and distribute copies for the benefit of the people’s right to know and reach out further to the broad mass of people. For almost a year following the systematic state intervention, the struggle of RIGHTS’ independent filmmakers for a free and relevant disposal of their craft continues. The repression of freedom of expression and worsening human rights situation only gives them more reason to produce more films and actively participate in the struggle for justice and peace. Thus, as an offshoot to last year’s unyielding and remarkable production, comes RIGHTS 2. Some 15 relatively new set of artists and artists collective from the independent film movement will display their artistic prowess and social relevance.

In this mini-documentary, presents the story of Edita Burgos and how the disappearance of her son Jonas changed her and her family.

Edita’s stories is one of many stories of human rights issues in the Philippines.

In the last few years there has been a decrease in the number of extrajudicial executions of lawyers, students, workers, peasants, activists, priests, women, children or members of civil society organizations in the Philippines has declined, however, new trends of abductions and slapping Filipino activists with trumped up charges have increased.

The Philippine government receives some $30 million annually in foreign military financing from the US government. The Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan or New Patriotic Alliance) urges foreign governments to stop providing forms of aid, especially military aid, to the Arroyo government.

In contrast of the $30 million military financing to the Philippines, people are loosing their houses and there is a blame on immigrants for the crash of the economy. The U.S. government needs to prioritize financial aide to its struggling people by bailing them out, not giving money to fund death squads. If the U.S. wants to really help the Philippines they should send food or provide humanitarian aide to the struggling masses.