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Tag Archives: Political killing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Reference: Raquel Redondiez, Chair, GABRIELA USA, gabrielawomen@gmail.com

GABRIELA USA CONDEMNS PERPETRATORS OF THE AMPATUAN MASSACRE, AND HOLDS GMA ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE STATE OF WARLORDISM AND CLIMATE OF IMPUNITY IN THE PHILIPPINES

The election-related carnage on the eve of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (IDEVAW) took the lives of 57 people, 14 women including
2 women lawyers and 17 journalists

San Francisco, CA–10 years ago, a United Nations Assembly resolved to recognize November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (IDEVAW) to work towards the end of violence affecting women all over the world. GABRIELA USA members from San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles and New York are taking this day to remember the significance of this international effort to raise awareness about women’s issues in the light of the horrific massacre which took place in Ampatuan, Maguindanao, in the island of Mindanao.

The death toll is rising in the massacre of unarmed civilians included lawyers, journalists, and at least 14 women who were not only murdered but also raped, mutilated and beheaded. The bodies were found buried on shallow ground on the side of the road where the 6 vehicle convoy carrying the victims were stopped in broad daylight on November 23rd. The victims where on their way to file election paperwork with the Commission on Elections to challenge the ruling political clan in the upcoming elections.

This incident cannot be separated from the thousands of other human rights violations committed under the Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (GMA) regime, wherein hundreds of women activists, leaders and community members have been killed, abducted, tortured and disappeared with impunity.

Arroyo’s share of responsibility for this massacre is certain as she has repeatedly facilitated and funded armed clan-based militias, utilizing US military aid, and has created the state of impunity in the Philippines where her close political allies could conceive of
carrying out such a heinous crime in broad daylight.  In fact, until today, no arrests has been made in the horrific crime, despite the
fact, or because of the fact, that the tractor used to hide the bodies belongs to the local government, controlled by the Ampatuans, GMA’s close allies.

The UN Declaration for the Elimination of Violence Against Women calls for all forms violence, including those condoned by the State. GMA must be held accountable, and we must be vigilant in continuing to demand the arrest, thorough investigation, and prosecution of the perpetrators of the Maguindanao massacre. Many believe that the massacre was perpetrated by 100 men led by Datu Unsay Mayor Andal Ampatuan Jr., of the Ampatuan clan, which delivered what has been dubbed as the “Maguindanao Miracle” a 100% of the votes for GMA’s slate in the 2007 elections.

Moreover, we must continue to struggle against GMA’s anti-insurgency program Oplan Bantay Laya II, which provides license for state-sponsored violence against anyone who asserts their democratic rights.  This U.S.-sponsored plan, which calls for the extermination of the “communist insurgency” by 2010, is a formula for continuing impunity for the military and military-sponsored civilian militias to commit human rights violations, especially against those they label as “community-fronts”.

On this 10th anniversary of IDEVAW, GABRIELA- USA recommits to demand an end to U.S. military and financial aid to the GMA regime, who we hold accountable for the illegal abduction and torture of Filipino American woman Melissa Roxas in May of this year, and hundreds of other human rights violations against women and children.

The women of GABRIELA-USA believe that the Ampatuan Massacre is a foreshadow of an escalation in the violence and human rights violations to be expected this election season, and should be a reminder for all, including the international community, to
participate in ensuring clean and honest elections.

This IDEVAW, GABRIELA USA condemns the relentless violence of the Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo regime against the Filipino people, especially women and children.  We stand in solidarity with women worldwide who are facing violence and will continue fighting for the day in which aggression towards women will no longer be tolerated.  And we will work pro-actively to support the election of genuine women’s representatives who will be our partners in this effort.

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MANILA, Philippines — The government’s list of most wanted suspects for media killings is “absurd.”

Communist Party of the Philippines founder Jose Maria Sison blasted Friday night the police and the Arroyo administration for releasing the list that showed he is the No. 1 wanted suspect for media killings.

In an interview with GMANews.TV, Sison said the wanted list was a “squid tactic” to “conceal the criminal responsibilities” of the administration.

“This is absurd. The Arroyo regime wants to deflect the public’s attention from the rampant human rights violations committed by the military like torturing and abduction (of leftists workers),” Sison said in Filipino.

The communist leader said if he could make his own list of suspects responsible for the rampant killing of journalists, he would include Mrs. Arroyo and those working for her to “cover-up the government’s gross human rights violations.”

The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Friday afternoon released a list of the most wanted suspects for media killings. It was composed of mostly leftist personalities. Sison topped the chart with a P10-million bounty placed on his head.

He was followed by Gregorio “Ka Roger” Rosal, the current spokesman of the CPP’s armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA), with P5-million reward for his arrest.

Sison and Rosal were tagged for the killing of Nelson Nadura in December 2003. The CPP founder denied having a hand in the hard-hitting journalist’s slay.

Sison, who is currently exiled in The Netherlands, also laughed off the bounty and suggested in jest that the government pay the country’s ambassador to The Netherlands for his arrest.

Asked if the police’s wanted list would affect the peace talks between the government and the CPP, Sison said it might as he questioned the government’s sincerity to push for the accord.

Sison said while they are very much interested in pushing for a genuine peace accord, achieving peace under the Arroyo administration would be difficult as it continues to “deceive” them. – Aie Balagtas See, GMANews.TV

special thanks to sinagman for posting this video!!!