Monthly Archives: August 2007

Justice for Cris Mendez

The Student Alliance for the Advancement of Democratic Rights in UP (STAND UP) joins the family, friends, and colleagues of UP student Cris Anthony Mendez in the pursuit for justice of his most unwanted death.

STAND UP, as the largest student alliance in UP Diliman, recognizes Cris' contribution to his fellow iskolars ng bayan as an active College and University Student Council member.

His death is allegedly due to fraternity hazing, but decisive investigations should be accomplished by the police and the UP administration to bring light his case.

STAND UP, having 13 member-fraternities and sororities, pose a reminder to such brotherhoods of their progressive history and orientation, which commonly adhere to the service of the nation and of the people. Living up to these ideals will not only avert fraternities from the deeply embedded culture of violence, but will also mark their significant placement in society.

Fraternities, together with the rest of the studentry, should unite against the true killers and oppressors of their ranks. Amidst intensified state terrorism, fee increases and commercialization of education, issues which may have been actively fought by Cris, a unified and progressive student body is demanded to engage.

We call on all fraternities, students, faculty, and general public to extend greatest possible support for the immediate resolution and justice of Cris' death, as well as its solemn and valuable remembrance.


Vanessa Faye Bolibol

STAND UP Chairperson

Contact info: 09217659517, coolcat_ipay@yahoo.com


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Statement of the Religions for Peace Philippines Interfaith Youth Network

 

National Youth Leaders Interfaith Cooperation Conference

Bp. La Verne D. Mercado Ecumenical Center,

National Council of Churches in the Philippines

Quezon City, Philippines

August 24-27, 2007

 

We are youth of diverse backgrounds; our faiths, cultures and traditions differentiate and separate us in many ways. Yet, we are united by our longing for peace, justice, and morality that the dismal situation of our society had denied from us.

We are a newly formed network of various faith and culture based national youth organizations that promote religious and ethnic dialogue and advocacy for genuine peace through mutual understanding and cooperation, in collaboration with the Religions for Peace Philippines and other like-minded organizations.

We, Catholics, Protestants, Muslims, Indigenous Peoples and advocates, work for genuine and lasting peace, justice, and morality through the lenses of our faiths. The deteriorating state of our society compelled us to unite, which on our own would be a tremendous task to overcome.

We take courage to face the challenge to overcome all forms of discrimination, oppression, and domination, to resist anti-people policies, to defend human rights and to continue the journey with the people’s struggle for their right to self-determination, and religious-ethnic harmony.

The three-day conference managed to identify the following issues of the renewed and escalating war in Mindanao and other areas experiencing armed hostilities, Indigenous People’s ancestral land, human rights and the fragile peace process as its primary concerns to be addressed.

The participants have likewise agreed to carryout education and awareness raising programs, advocacies and campaigns and special projects relevant to the needs of the people. We also have agreed to issue a statement of concern to stop the war in Mindanao and to express deep concern over the miserable situation of the displaced families and communities.

Therefore, we the members of the Religions for Peace Philippine Interfaith Youth Network, affirms that hope lies in the combined strength and wisdom each of us have committed to share. We as young people uphold our historic role and responsibility to contribute in the clamor of many to effect meaningful change in society in solidarity with various sectors working for a just, peaceful and prosperous Philippine society.

 

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UP Students Demand for Release of Desaparecidos Colleagues

UP students commemorated the International Day of the Disappeared with renewed fervor of protest demanding for the immediate resurfacing of colleagues Karen Empeno and Sherlyn Cadapan.

The two have been desaparacedos since July last year, and recent testimonies from a farmer who escaped from the military indicates that they are still alive and under military detainment.

"Mrs. Arroyo and her AFP are liable for the more than one year they have stolen from the lives of Karen and She, which were offered in the genuine service of the people more than any cohort of Gloria did," said Ralph Penafiel, STAND UP executive board member.

"The growing number of activists sentenced to be desapped by Arroyo only encourages more people to tread the same paths lead by those great heroes."

Penafiel added that "Karen and She serves as our inspiration to confront the various attacks of the Arroyo regime to our ranks. Now that we face the 300 percent increase in tuition and the intensified comercialization of UP education, we are prepared to deal with the regime's more repressive measures to quell the students' dissent."

STAND UP, the largest student alliance which Karen and She were once part of, lead a protest action and a paraliturgical service at the Palma Hall Lobby this noon.

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FREE JOSE MARIA SISON!

The International Committee Defend condemns in the strongest terms the unjust arrest this morning, August 27, of Filipino political exile Prof. Jose Maria Sison, by the Dutch Police, on trumped-up charges, and the simultaneous police raids in Utrecht on several houses of Filipinos, including the NDF International Information Office.

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Chronology of Persecution of Prof. Jose Maria Sison by the Philippine, US and Dutch Governments

Since his release from military detention and the nullification of subversion and rebellion charges against him in 1986 after the fall of the Marcos fascist dictatorship, Prof. Jose Maria Sison has been subjected to a series of false and politically motivated charges in 1988, 1991, 2003 and 2006. One after the other, these charges have been dismissed and nullified by Philippine courts in 1992, 1994 and 2007. Thus, they have been proven as malicious and pure fabrications of the Philippine military, police and intelligence authorities.

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Malacañang Stonewalling tactics in Doble Probe Aggravates Political Crisis

Absence of legitimacy, not the opposition, is destroying the Arroyo administration.

This was the reply of the umbrella group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan to the claims of the President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo that the "titans of hate" continue to attempt to bring her down by engaging in the "politics of destruction".

"Malacañang's effort to stop investigations into questions of election fraud is the real destructive deed here. The administration's stonewalling tactics aggravate political tension and stir public unrest. What is destroying this administration is its own lack of legitimacy and credibility," said Bayan secretary general Renato M. Reyes, Jr.

"When the ruling administration chooses to engage in the politics of deception and repression, there can be no other result but political crisis. Arroyo should stop blaming her foes and start accepting her government's basic weakness, its lack of legitimacy," Reyes added.

Bayan earlier warned that the use of EO 464 and MC 108 to derails Senate investigations into Doble revelations will fuel public unrest and will add to public disenchantment with the Arroyo administration.

"Only a government with something to hide will be this paranoid with and contemptuous of the Senate investigation. The message we're getting is that Malacañang is again trying to cover up the truth," Reyes said.

Reyes also said that the administration cannot hide behind the "war in Mindanao" just so it can skirt the issue of the 2004 electoral fraud. "It is nothing but a self-serving attempt to avoid an issue that has long haunted the regime,"

"Because of what happened in 2004, everything done by this administration, including its declaration of an all out offensive in Sulu and Basilan, are now questionable acts. Invoking the fighting in Mindanao for such a self-serving cause is really pathetic," Reyes said.

"The public deserves to know the truth behind the wiretapping scandal and electoral fraud that happened in 2004," the Bayan leader added.

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TRANSMISION-PISTON to Protest vs.Common Carrier’s Tax

The Transmision-PISTON(Transport of Southern Mindanao for Independence, Solidarity and Nationalism-Pinag-isang Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Opereytor Nationwide)) vehemently opposes the planned 2,600% increasein the common carrier’s tax for public utility vehicles by the BIRsaying that this will affect not only the almost 75,000 small drivers and operators in Davao City but public commuters and consumers as well. Read More »

The Moro People Have Had It with All-Out Wars!

Make Room for Peace, Pull-out troops in Basilan

For most of us Muslims who are observing the peace negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, we are saddened by what is happening in Basilan for the past few weeks.

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P10 COLA Insulting Pittance for Our Hardwork, Say Workers

“Despite our hardwork, the RTWPB—lowly mouthpiece of capitalists—seems to always push us further to deprivation. We are outraged by the insulting pittance that they have decided to shove onto our plates while the capitalists of Davao region continue to fatten their bellies with the millions of profit from our sweat and blood.”
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