CRAM letter of condemnation on the killing and brutal dispersal of Farmers and Lumads in Kidapawan
*CRAM is a member-organization of IPMSDL
Ref: COR/Reg-042016 Date: 09th April 2016
Secretary, Department of National Defense
Room 301 DND Building, Camp Emilio Aguinaldo, EDSA, Quezon City
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Secretary, Department of Justice
Padre Faura St., Manila
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Chairperson, Commission on Human Rights
SAAC Bldg., UP Complex, Commonwealth Ave nue, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines
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Chairperson, Justice and Human Rights Committee, Philippine
Senate Rm. 512 GSIS Bldg., Financial Center, Roxas Blvd., Pasay City
Subject: Condemnation of the reported violent and merciless repression in Kidapawan to members of small scale farmers and indigenous communities perpetrated the Philippine National Police (PNP) in response to their demand for food and other basic survival needs.
The Centre for Research and Advocacy Manipur (CRAM) would like to express our strong condemnation of the reported violent and merciless repression in Kidapawan to members of small scale farmers and indigenous communities perpetrated by the Philippine National Police (PNP) in response to their demand for food and other basic survival needs. CRAM would like to express our deep concern that the attack reportedly resulted in seven deaths of innocent lives while injuring several others, including women, children and injured, with several reportedly missing. The excessive use of force on more than 6,000 unarmed peasants and Lumad indigenous members of the Kidapawan for demanding their basic right to food aid and immediate relief from drought for the six El Niño-stricken municipalities of the Philippines is highly unfortunate and uncalled for.
CRAM is fully aware that the peasants and Lumad communities had been in negotiations with the provincial Governor, Lala Talino-Mendoza, who responded to their demand with an offer of 3 kilos of Rice per person and to be provided every three months. In the midst of the El Niño drought and the resulting hunger that has spread through the North Cotabato communities, not a single bag of rice had been released, which led to much anger and dissatisfaction among the peasants and Lumad communities. The failure to provide Rice and other livelihood support in the midst of famine and adverse situation constitute absolving responsibility of the Philippines Government to initiate adequate protection measures and to promote the right to life of all marginalized communities in the Philippines.
CRAM calls for a thorough and independent probing of the unfortunate incident of 1st April at Kidapawan which led to loss of lives and injuring several others, and for Governor Talino-Mendoza, the local government units (LGUs), the PNP, and the current administration to be held accountable for their role in the human rights violations. CRAM further demand to respect indigenous Lumad peoples cultural and survival rights over their land and resources. The Right to Life, including provision of adequate food and survival means and other relief materials for communities affected by natural calamities in the Philippines should be upheld. The Government of the Philippines should upheld and adhere to all indigenous human rights and humanitarian laws to protect all fundamental rights of its citizens, primarily the peasants and indigenous communities.
CRAM would like to thank you for your kind consideration of our humble appeal.
Sanaton Laishram President
CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND ADVOCACY, MANIPUR (CRAM) SEGA ROAD HODAM LEIRAK, IMPHAL, MANIPUR – 795001, INDIA
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