IJN is monitoring human rights abuses in the Philippines, where hundreds of activists and members of the media who criticized the regime have been murdered. IJN asks: Is the "global war on terror" being used as a cover for politically motivated murder and oppression in the Philippines.
On April 11, 2008 the United Nations Human Rights Council will hold its first Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the Philippines. Member states plan to carefully look at the human rights record of the Philippines in a three-hour meeting in Geneva. The “disappearances” and killings of countless politicians,social activists, and journalists should be at the center of discussion at the Review in Geneva. The Philippines is the first country to be examined under the Universal Periodic Review and will serve as a precedent for future countries called into Review by the Human Rights Council.
On August 14, 2007 friends, family and supporters of the 'GABNet 3' welcomed National Chairperson Dr. Annalisa Enrile, as well as GABNet founders, Ms. Judith Mirkinson and Ms. Ninotchka Rosca home. In early August of 2007, Dr. Enrile was informed that she would not be able to return to Los Angeles from the Philippines after attending the Women’s International Solidarity Affair because her name appeared on a state hold list, preventing her from leaving the country. Ms. Mirkinson and Ms. Rosca were reported to be on the same list.
The Government of the Philippines has placed three GABRIELA Network (GABNet 3) leaders on a 'hold list,' and prohibited their Chair, Dr. Enrile, from returning to her home in Los Angeles. GABRIELA and many other international human rights organizations are calling for their immediate removal from this list, and calling for the Philippine Government to allow them to return home.
The frightening ordeal of 3 US activists who were prevented from leaving the Phillipines seems to be almost over. Many feared for the GabNet3's safety, since hundreds of activists and members of the media have been assassinated in the Phillipines in the last decade.
The GabNet statement of August 14, 2007 is reproduced below:
Seeking Answers: "Probing Political Persecution, Repression, and Human Rights Violations in the Philippines"
There is a human rights crisis in the Philippines. Since Gloria Macapagal Arroyo assumed the presidency in 2001, there have been more than 800 extrajudicial killings. Activists, community leaders, organizers, lawyers, journalists, development workers and human rights workers have been assassinated. Progressive members of Congress are being prosecuted on rebellion charges and legal opposition organizations are being threatened.
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