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URGENT APPEAL FOR THE DEFENSE OF WOMEN HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDERS IN THE SOUTHERN TAGALOG REGION
Dear sisters and fellow human rights advocates,
Political persecution is on the rise and human rights violations remain unabated in the Philippines. As extra judicial killings, abductions and disappearances continue, leaders and members of militant and progressive organizations in the Southern Tagalog region now face fabricated legal offensives in an attempt to immobilize those critical of the Arroyo administration.
Last September 26, 2008 seventy-two (72) leaders and spokespersons of progressive organizations, and political activists from Southern Tagalog were charged with murder and multiple frustrated murder for the alleged assault of a police detachment in Puerto Galera, Mindoro Oriental. Since October 23, 2008, six of the 72 individuals have already been arrested and detained.
Among those charged and facing possible arrest are 20 women leaders, activists and women rights defenders including:
Helen Asdolo, Gabriela Southern Tagalog Secretary General and Gabriela Women's Party 5th nominee and Regional Coordinator
Amelita Sto Tomas, Gabriela and Gabriela Women's Party Provincial Coordinator for Cavite
Luz Baculo, Pagkakaisa ng Manggagawa sa Timog Katagalugan (Pamantik-KMU) Secretary General
Doris Cuario, KARAPATAN Southern Tagalog Secretary General
Dina Capetillo. KARAPATAN Batangas Spokesperson
Sheryll Villegas, BAYAN-Cavite secretary general
Karen Ortiz, Cavite Ecumenical Movement for Justice and Peace Deputy Secretary General
We appeal for your support. Together let us bring due attention to the criminalization of activists, the political persecution, human rights violations and injustice that the Gloria Macapagal Arroyo regime has unleashed anew against women rights defenders in the Southern Tagalog region.
Please write letters of protest to the Philippine government:
H.E. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
President of the Republic
Malacañang Palace, JP Laurel St., San Miguel, Manila, Philippines
Voice: (+632) 564 1451 to 80
Fax: (+632) 742-1641 / 929-3968
Cell#: (+ 63) 919 898 4622 / (+63) 917 839 8462
E-mail: email@example.com. ph / firstname.lastname@example.org. ph
Sec. Gilberto C. Teodoro Jr.
Department of National Defense
Room 301 DND Building, Camp Emilio Aguinaldo, E. de los Santos Avenue, Quezon City, Philippines
Voice:+63(2) 911-9281 / 911-0488
Fax:+63(2) 911 6213
Sec. Raul M. Gonzalez
Department of Justice
Padre Faura St., Manila, Philippines
Direct Line 521-8344; 5213721
Trunkline 523-84-81 loc.214
Fax: (+632) 521-1614
Email email@example.com. ph
Hon. Leila De Lima
Chairperson, Commission on Human Rights
SAAC Bldg., UP Complex
Commonwealth Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines
Fax: (+632) 929 0102
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. ph
*Please send Gabriela Southern Tagalog a copy of your protest letter through email@example.com; You may also visit http://gabrielast. wordpress. com for updates.