On the Sarawak Land Code Ammendment

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) stands in solidarity with the Malay and Indigenous Dayak peoples of Sarawak, Malaysia in defending their customary rights to their territorial domain and communal forest reserve, referred to as pemakai menoa and pulau galau, respectively, in the Dayak Iban language. The concluded amendment to the Sarawak Land Code limits these territorial domains to only 1,000 hectares per community but to be declared under “usufructuary right” only, or the right to use but not to own. The exploitation of such rights has been done more than 30 years ago and has only deteriorated from bad to worse.

On July 14, 2018, hundreds of Indigenous Peoples (IP) protested in Bintulu town, Sarawak to reject the land code that erodes their rights over ancestral lands, by putting absolute power to demarcate land use and ownership to the State Land and Survey director of the government. This jeopardizes the entire culture, life, and right to self-determination of IP as the land code only provides a piecemeal portion from the customary territory the IP have been developing since time immemorial. Instead of promoting cooperation and involvement of the Dayak, the state railroaded the amendments without any IP representative.

Historically, the global IP situation depicts the systemic failure of state laws in upholding IP rights. More so, these state laws and policies are continuously used by the governments and private sector to dispossess IP of their ancestral lands and territories. In Brazil, the Proposal of the Constitutional Amendment 215 (PEC 215) transfers the power to demarcate indigenous Guarani homeland forest and plains to the government’s legislative body which is drooling to give the green light to large-scale extractive and energy projects, agri-business, and infrastructures within the IP territories. In Peru, the Lima Act of 2015 and Legislative Decree No. 22175 requires several IP groups like Quecha poeples and Shipibo-Konibo peoples to crawl through bureaucratic hurdles of state lands and forest assessment, to apply for titles, and to gain only leasehold access and not full rights to indigenous lands.

The Indigenous People’s Rights Protection bill (PPHMA) in Indonesia was signed giving 13,000 out of the 8.2 million hectares of ancestral lands to indigenous communities. But the Indonesian government continuously circumvents and delays this promise, while indigenous communities face criminalization and persecution when their living space overlaps with protected areas or private concessions. Also, the promise of India’s Forest Right Act of 2006 is to award ancestral forest and land titles to indigenous communities, yet it remained hollow as IP defenders get killed after protesting against the government’s plan to expropriate their forests and lands in favor of industrial expansion and commercial land use.

Aside from land laws and policies that continue to dispossess the IP, government sponsored policies masked in counter-insurgency programs justifies militarization of IP communities where investments and corporate mining, energy and economic interests is suspiciously linked.

Ancestral lands cradle the life and culture of the indigenous peoples; it the basis of their livelihood and resources for ages. Therefore, implementation of universal declaration of IP rights over their territories must be upheld in the highest standards, and their contributions to nation-building and global development must be recognized. The solidarity of IP movements and resistance marks a decisive stride against state-sponsored oppression through disenfranchising laws and deceiving policies that only paves way for imperialist plunder of ancestral domains. We call on the international support, organizations, and IP rights defenders to stand together to unite and struggle for the protection of IP lands and territories!

RESPECT INDIGENOUS PEOPLES TERRITORIES, RESOURCES AND CULTURE!

FIGHT FOR INDIGENOUS PEOPLES RIGHT TO ANCESTRAL LANDS!

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

 

 

On the PH Government’s counter-insurgency pronouncements in the UN High Level Conference

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) deplores the continuous sabotage of the Philippine administration and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in addressing human rights violations and roots of armed conflict, by putting undue delays in Peace Talks and purveying counter-insurgency war at the expense of political activists, indigenous peoples (IP) communities, and peoples’ organizations.

Last July 1, at the UN High-Level Conference of Heads of Counter-Terrorism, PH National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. likened the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and its armed wing New People’s Army (NPA) to Daesh (IS) extremist group. Putting in context the Philippine Department of Justice’s ongoing petition that named IP leaders as alleged terrorists, the indefinite termination of President Duterte to the peace process dialogues with the CPP-NPA, the normalised bombings and military encampments of Lumad communities in Mindanao under the Martial Law, and the recorded arrest of 178 IP leaders, and 24 IP political detainees from July 2016 to February 2018 – all these unmasks the calibrated State maneuvers to quell the IP resistance against destructive projects such as dams, large scale mining, eco-tourism projects, and plantations.

The overwhelming support of the international community to the Filipino IP movement against human rights violations, in defense of their ancestral lands and self-determination, seems to be cobbled down by the State with a full-scale militarization to suppress and criminalize the peoples’ dissent.

We call on the international and local IP organizations, advocates, and communities to steadfastly unite against all forms of Sate repression and oppression against all IP leaders and activists alike. We call on all peace-loving citizens and human rights defenders to strengthen our linkages to all oppressed sectors in frustrate all attempts of tyranny and state terror in trampling down the peoples’ rights.

 

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

On the Investigation and Initiation of Commission on Inquiry for Human Rights Violations in PH

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) echoes the urgent demand for a fact-finding mission and commission on inquiry concerning the rampant human rights violations in the Philippines, as demanded by different people’s organizations, and pushed by the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

Since President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration took office in 2016, more than 12,000 deaths from the bloody war on drugs, “Oplan Tokhang”, have been reported, majority of which are from the urban poor. With the on-going Martial Law in the whole island of Mindanao, in the Southern Philippines, heavy militarization through encampments of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and attacks on indigenous and peasant communities resulted to forced evacuations of the Lumad who are also terrorized by almost day-to-day reports of extra-judicial killings, threats, harassments, and illegal arrests. Also, under the backdrop of the current counter-insurgency program “Oplan Kapayapaan,” a crackdown on human rights defenders and peoples’ organizations resulted to indiscriminate arrests and fake surrenders of alleged communist rebels and members of the New People’s Army, as part of the attempts to silence critics and voices of dissent.

Indigenous Peoples (IP) leaders and activists were not spared as several were included in the “terrorist list” of the Department of Justice including IPMSDL Global Coordinator Beverly Longid, UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of Indigenous Peoples Vicky Tauli-Corpuz, Cordillera Peoples Alliance Chairperson Windel Bolinget, SANDUGO Co-Chairperson Joanna Cariño, former Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact Secretary General Joan Carling, former member of UN EMRIP Jose Molintas, and leader of Tontongan ti Umili Jeanette Ribaya-Cawiding, among many others. With the current atmosphere of impunity in the Philippines, activists campaigning for the rights to ancestral land against large-scale mining and other extractive industries become targets of human rights violations by state-forces.

Instead of pursuing peace and justice, President Duterte has affirmed immunity to state-forces against any investigation or criminal case, and even encouraged them to carry on the attacks and offensives for the war on drugs and other counter-insurgency campaigns. While indigenous and human rights organizations call for state-accountability, military and police forces tainted by these issues were either promoted or re-assigned to different posts in the government.

The IPMSDL resolves to rally behind the IP, marginalized sectors, and peoples to call for justice in this climate of impunity and senseless killings in the Philippines. We echo the call of the UNHRC for the immediate cooperation of the government for the investigation and complete stop of the war on drugs and ensure the human rights and right to freedom of expression of all its citizens. We call on the international community, IP organizations, peace advocates and defenders of human rights to drumbeat the Filipino people’s pursuit of justice and lasting peace.

 

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

On the Militarization of Higaonon Communities in Misamis Oriental

Militarization tramples Higaonon Indigenous Peoples Right to Self-Determination,
d
isregards their human rights, and violates FPIC!

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) extends its highest solidarity with the Higaonon Lumad peoples of Misamis Oriental, Philippines who struggle to defend their ancestral lands from resource plunder and militarization.

Higaonon people were forcibly evacuated from their ancestral lands after the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) occupied their village, and subjected them to threats, harassment, and intimidation. Last May 26, the battalion-size military built their camp in the ancestral lands of Higaonon as a prelude to the entry of so-called development projects. Military camps and detachments in their territory are set up by the State and corporation to quell any resistance from the community and protect the business interests of private entities. The experiences of Higaonon and Lumad peoples underscores militarization as a scheme to force forward development projects in their ancestral lands that do not reflect the genuine needs and aspirations of Indigenous communities. At the expense of the Higaonon’s right to free, prior, and informed consent (FPIC), local government favors large corporations and businesses.

Threats, violence, and intimidation brought by militarization instill fear in the IP communities. Military elements force the local community to confess that they are members of the communist rebels, New People’s Army (NPA), and surrender. Some of them were tied and rough-handled among other physical abuses.

The rich resources in the ancestral lands of Higaonon in the town of Lagonglong, adjacent to the Mount Balatukan, is known for its hot springs and inactive volcano viable for geothermal energy development. The untouched gold deposits in the nearby lakes has also been reported as target for mining and extractive projects.

For IP and other national minorities, land is life. Indigenous communities have the most important role in determining the future of our ancestral land that is closely linked to our identity and right to self-determination. All forms of development projects and militarization that threaten to plunder ancestral lands and IP ways of life are inexcusable and is a grave violation of our rights.

We call on the all Indigenous communities, IP rights advocates, human rights defenders, and peace advocates all over the world to stand and support the Higaonon’s demand to safely go back to their villages. We demand the total pull out of military forces in our ancestral lands, and any future encampments in any IP territory. Let us fight together to defeat all attempts of exploitation and oppression by the ruling elites. Let us stand in solidarity with all struggling Indigenous communities for the recognition and actual realization of IP right to self-determination and self-determined sustainable development in the Philippines and in all parts of the world.

NO TO MILITARIZATION AND CORPORATE PLUNDER OF ANCESTRAL LANDS!

FIGHT FOR THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLES RIGHT FOR SELF-DETERMINATION!

 

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

On the Government of Bangladesh’s War on Drugs

End Bangladesh’s “War on Drugs”!
IPMSDL’s Statement of Condemnation Against the Government of Bangladesh’s War on Drugs

 

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement on Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) vehemently condemns the Government of Bangladesh’s War on Drugs! Over 130 alleged “drug offenders” have been shot dead and at least 13,000 were arrested by Bangladeshi security forces in nationwide anti-drug operations under the Government’s Zero Tolerance Policy against illegal drugs in May 2018.

This scenario is similar to what is happening in other countries in the region, particularly in the Philippines, Cambodia, and Indonesia. These governments’ obsession with the war against drugs has cost thousands of innocent lives while many others are still at risk, especially human rights defenders and activists. These so-called wars against drugs have also been used to cover up political and extrajudicial killings which target activists who are farmers, workers, or Indigenous Peoples standing up for their rights.

The war on drugs is not a genuine effort in tackling the perceived drug problem. It promotes rampant human rights violation through its one-sided shootouts and arbitrary arrests instead of investing in public healthcare and rehabilitation services, or better yet, addressing the roots of the drug addiction and social unrest by improving the quality and accessibility of social services that will enable the development of the peoples’ general welfare.

IPMSDL calls for justice for all the victims of the systematic killings and demand that the perpetrators of these atrocities be brought to justice. We also echo the call of civil society organizations in a statement initiated by the International Drug Policy Consortium and the Asian Network of People Who Use Drugs: “Let us remain vigilant to other countries showing signs of adopting similar repressive policies, and initiate constructive and inclusive dialogue at an early stage to avoid further human rights violations in the name of drug control”.

 

STOP EXTRAJUDICIAL KILLINGS! UPHOLD HUMAN RIGHTS!

JUSTICE FOR ALL THE VICTIMS OF STATE-PERPETRATED VIOLENCE!

LONG LIVE INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY!

 

Reference: Beverly Longid, IPMSDL Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

On the Brazilian Indigenous Peoples’ ‘Free Land Camp’ and the Mapuche’s Fight against the Sky Lican Ray Pino Huacho Project

Stand for The Indigenous Peoples’ Right to Ancestral Lands!

A Statement of Support to the Brazilian Indigenous Peoples’ ‘Free Land Camp’
and the Mapuche’s Fight against the Sky Lican Ray Pino Huacho Project

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) extends its support and solidarity to the struggles of the Indigenous Peoples of Brazil and Chile! Thousands of Indigenous Peoples (IP) from the 5 regions of Brazil gather in this year’s ‘Free Land Camp’ (Acampamento Terra Livre) happening from April 23 to 27 to demand for the demarcation of their traditional lands by the Brazilian state. Meanwhile in Chile, the Mapuche communities are asserting their right to their sacred space which was recently invaded by the construction of Sky Lican Ray Pino Huacho ecotourism project.

In strong unity, the IPMSDL stands with the Brazil IP community against the attacks of the Brazilian state and by president Michel Temer with his anti-indigenous “Opinion 001/2017 from the Union General-Attorney” or the Territory Registration Law that will rampantly increase land grabbing by making it impossible to register IP lands. This will wipe out almost all IP lands in Brazil in favor of huge agro-business corporations and government businesses, putting at risk the lands, culture, livelihood, and identity of the Brazilian IP.

The IPMSDL also strongly supports the Mapuche communities’ rejection of the construction of Sky Lican Ray Pino Huacho Project in their ancestral lands in the Villarica National Park. The protected area recognized as a National Park is also declared by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) as a Biosphere Reserve. The plunder of lands with projects masked as energy and recreational center projects unjustly disregards the ways of life, development, and culture of the IP.

We call on to IP movements, organizations, and advocates to link arms in defense against the violation of our collective rights as Indigenous Peoples! Grave violations of human rights, including threats of arrests and killings by state forces to IP leaders and communities defending their ancestral lands in Brazil, Chile, and in the whole of Latin America have been recorded in past years.

We condemn all forms of violations and destruction of our ancestral lands that put the IP at risk and further marginalization! We join the international IP movement in advancing our rights to self-determination, land, and life!

NO TO SKY LICAN RAY PINO HUACHO IN CHILE!

JUNK THE TERRITORY REGISTRATION LAW IN BRAZIL!

UPHOLD HUMAN RIGHTS AND THE RIGHT TO
SELF-DETERMINATION AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLES OF THE WORLD!

UNITE AND STRUGGLE FOR OUR RIGHT TO SELF-DETERMINATION AND LIBERATION!

 

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

PRESS RELEASE | ECP Bishops to DoJ Secretary: do the right thing, withdraw terrorist list and continue peace talks

MEDIA RELEASE
May 18, 2018

ECP Bishops to DoJ Secretary: do the right thing, withdraw terrorist list and continue peace talks

In a statement of “deep concern” over the alleged terrorist list filed in court by the Department of Justice (DoJ), the Council of Bishops of the Episcopal Church of the Philippines (ECP) urged the DoJ Secretary to “withdraw the list if not the petition altogether” as great risk and threats of harassment looms on the individuals listed including two of the ECP’s members – International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) Global Coordinator Beverly Longid and the United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Victoria Tauli-Corpuz.

The ECP statement was released in response to the DoJ petition filed at the Manila Regional Trial Court last February seeking to tag the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New People’s Army (NPA) as terrorist groups under the Human Security Act of 2007. The petition includes over 600 names accused of membership in the CPP-NPA. Other than Longid and Corpuz, both known as international Indigenous Peoples (IP) rights advocates who are also Indigenous Bontok-Kankanaey from the Mountain Province, IP leaders also found in the list are Joan Carling, Atty. Jose Molintas, Windel Bolinget, Jeanette Ribaya-Cawiding, Joanna Carino, Datu Isidro Indao, Datu Mandayhon, and Datu Mampadayag.

“Due to my social involvement, I have experienced threats, harassments, and intimidation from suspected State agents,” Longid said in her personal statement. Similarly, the ECP stated that human rights advocates and ECP members accused of trumped up cases reported being subject of harassments making them vulnerable to unjust vexation – something they believe should have ended during the Martial Law years.

Attacks on IP and human rights activists is “a reaction [of the government] to [the] defense of Lumads caught in the massive military operations launched by Rodrigo Duterte” as Tauli-Corpuz pointed out in an interview. Longid also stressed, “Impunity reigns in my country, and the pronouncements and actions of Duterte show his total disregard for human rights, peoples’ welfare and interests, and rule of law, undermining our tight to speak freely and other basic freedoms.”

The ECP expressed that, instead of vilifying and putting people in great risk, the government must push for the peace talks with the National Democratic Front to prosper by addressing the ‘socio-economic issues [that] have spawned the long-drawn conflict in this land’ and put an end to ‘killing each other for another generation’. The IPMSDL reports that numerous cases of IP rights violations, killings, and attacks on culture and ways of life are the result of state military and para-military abuses carried out under the guise of counter-insurgency and anti-terrorism activities.

“The International IPMSDL organization, and I in my personal capacity, is overwhelmed by this show of solidarity to drop the DoJ terrorist list. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the whole Council,” Longid declared regarding the ECP’s statement. “At the same time, we appeal to all to echo the call to dismiss and delist the names in the DoJ petition and stand for everyone’s democratic rights for lawful dissent without fearing for their safety and security.”

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

CLICK HERE to view the ECP Council of Bishops’ Statement.

On the Struggle of the Indigenous Peoples of Ecuador Against Extractivism in the Aguarico River

Protect Indigenous Peoples Lives and Territories!
A Statement of Support to the Struggle of the Indigenous Peoples of Ecuador
Against Extractivism in the Aguarico River

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) condones the destructive and invasive gold mining and extraction operations in the Aguarico River and the Cayambe-Coca National Park in Ecuador that trample the rights of the Kofan people of Sinangoe over their ancestral lands and territories.

The Kofan Community of Sinangoe, along with several Indigenous Peoples (IP) communities and local organizations, expressed their strong condemnation of the Ecuadorian Government’s awarding of mining concessions within their ancestral territories in a public denunciation released on May 2, 2018 following the Sinangoe Indigenous Guards’ discovery of heavily equipped mining operations in the Aguarico River.

These extractive invasions are illegally operating without any prior consultation with Sinangoe and without a proper environmental license to which Mario Criollo, President of the Cofán de Sinangoe community, referred to as “a direct violation of the Ecuadorian Constitution and international treaties”. The pollution of the river and plunder of forest lands puts the Kofan people’s health, homes, livelihood, and culture at risk. These mining activities are prelude to the Amazon gold rush, which will bring about bigger environmental catastrophes with potentially devastating effects on the lands, waters, forests, and the fragile ecosystem of the region.

The Aguarico River, which extends across some parts of the Amazon rainforest, is the source of life not only of the Kofan people, but of all the Indigenous nationalities living along the Aguarico. Last April 16, the Sinangoe Community joined other mining-impacted communities in a national protest that called upon the government to cancel all new mining concessions and stop all operations in the headwaters of the Aguarico River.

Despite Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno’s bold pronouncements that not one mining concession will be awarded, the current administration – particularly the Environment Ministry, the Mining Ministry, the National Prosecutor, the Ombudsman Office, and the local governments remain tightlipped and hands-off on the issue.
We call on the international community, IP organizations and advocates to stand with the Kofan and the IP communities of Ecuador and continue to assert our right to our lands, territories, and ways of life! We stand steadfast against extractivism and a system that puts a higher value on profits than indigenous lives and lands.

STOP THE MINING AND GOLD EXTRACTIONS IN AGUARICO RIVER!
FIGHT FOR THE KOFAN PEOPLES RIGHT TO ANCESTRAL TERRITORIES!

SIGN THE PLEDGE: https://www.amazonfrontlines.org/stand-sinangoe/

 

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

PRESS RELEASE | International Indigenous Peoples Movement praises local councils’ resolution against PH terrorist list

MEDIA RELEASE
May 17, 2018

International Indigenous Peoples Movement
praises local councils’ resolution against PH terrorist list

“Activism is not terrorism. And with the growing support of local councils in the Philippines against the terrorist tagging by the Duterte administration, I am more than thankful for the reassurance that our fight for the rights, freedom, and justice of Indigenous Peoples are legitimate,” said International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) Global Coordinator Beverly Longid, referring to the passing of Resolution No. 27 – 2018 by the Sangguniang Bayan of the Municipality of Sagada, the Resolution No. 2018-182 by the Mountain Province Provincial Board, and the Baguio City Council Resolution No. 92.

IPMSDL commends the Municipality of Sagada’s resolution last April 16 “requesting the Department of Justice/Philippine government to drop in its terrorist tag the following persons, namely: Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, Joan Carling, Beverly L. Longid, Atty. Jose Molintas, Windel Bolinget, Jeanette Ribaya-Cawiding and Joanna Cariño.” Similarly, last March 20, the Baguio City passed a resolution “urging the government to drop the ’terrorist’ tag against Cordillera Peoples Alliance (CPA) leaders.”

“As a daughter of the Cordillera, I am glad that these councils recognized that the Department of Justice (DOJ) fabricated the terrorist list in the proscription which includes my name and my colleagues in the CPA. I have been with different internationally-recognized IP organizations and civil society movements here and abroad since the 80s. These councils know us and our passion in advocating for the respect and recognition of IP rights,” Longid, an Indigenous Bontok-Kankanaey, explained.

The DOJ petition for proscription released on February 21, 2018 listed over 600 names for alleged membership in the New People’s Army (NPA) and the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) -organizations which allegedly use “acts of terror to sow fear and panic to overthrow the government.”

With the recent killings and illegal arrests of human rights workers and activists, the ‘terrorist list’ merely intensifies the government’s free pass to arrest voices critical of the Duterte government, including IP and human rights defenders. Recently, Fr. Mark Ventura, a Catholic priest and an IP and anti-mining advocate was shot dead in front of children and choir members after having mass in Cagayan last April 29.

“These are dark times indeed for human rights in the Philippines. I recently became a grandmother and I would like to spend time with my family, especially my granddaughter, without fearing for our safety. That’s why I thank all institutions, organizations, and individuals in the Philippines and abroad who echo our call to drop the DOJ petition and guarantee the protection of every activists’ human rights,” ended Longid.

Click on the links to access the resolutions:

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org

On the renewed US-Philippines 34th Balikatan Exercises

NO TO IMPERIALIST MILITARY AGGRESSION IN PHILIPPINES AND ASIA!
STATEMENT ON THE RENEWED US-PHILIPPINES 34TH BALIKATAN EXERCISES

The International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL) calls for the immediate termination and removal of military exercises by the United States (US) Military and other imperialist countries in the Philippines after the opening of the renewed Balikatan Exercises last May 7, 2018. This outright foreign military intervention will further instigate the aggression currently escalating in the West Philippine Sea putting the sovereignty and safety of women, children, and Indigenous Peoples (IP) in grave danger, and the natural environment at risk of destruction.

Major provinces in Central Luzon and Cagayan region, home for Aeta IP villages and other local communities, will be the war games zone to almost 8,000 military forces from the US, Japan, Australia, and Philippines in the guise of improved “counter-terrorism capabilities” for the “eradication of global terror networks.” For the Aeta farmers, this means threats of dislocation from their ancestral lands, as well as disruption of livelihood and ways of life. In Central Luzon, a sprawling 18,000 hectare Camp O’Donnell, a component facility of Clark Air Base which used to be US Air Force’s military base, captured the IP ancestral lands causing major dislocation to thousands of Aetas.

For 70 years under the US and Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) which was signed after World War II, the military machinery of US has mobilized direct and indirect military intervention to protect their political and economic interests in several countries. This militarism impacts against the people in their own countries through increased military bases occupation, proxy wars, intensive intelligence surveillance, and counterinsurgency plans usually employed to quell local dissent to both local and foreign economic and military intrusions.

The fueling of militarist actions is directly tantamount to several cases of massive environmental destruction like the damage caused by the US Navy warship to the World Heritage Site, Tubbataha Reef National Park in Palawan, in 2013 which also victimized indigenous fisherfolks. IP are also exposed to grave human rights violations as seen when 6,000 US troops, double of those deployed in Iran, occupied Zamboanga in Mindanao, where Lumad indigenous communities faced blows of attacks on their houses and schools. Subsequently, military exercises and military deployment target areas that are rich with natural resources which become ideal locations for mining, plantation, extractivism and energy projects by the state and multinational and transnational foreign corporations.

Intensified militarism only jeopardizes IP, peasants, women, fisherfolks, and children, subjecting them and their communities to military atrocities and human rights violations. It escalates environmental plunder and uses third world countries as pawns to global military offensive of imperialist powers. We call for solidarity from all IP and freedom advocates against US intervention and imperialist militarism that threatens the rights of peoples and IP all over the world!

STOP THE US MILITARY INTERVENTION IN PHILIPPINES!
STOP THE BALIKATAN EXERCISES!
FIGHT FOR IP RIGHTS ON ANCESTRAL LANDS AND TERRITORIES!
DOWN WITH US IMPERIALISM!

 

Reference: Beverly Longid, Global Coordinator | info@ipmsdl.org