Friday, November 10, 2006

quick update

Today we met with organizers from Karapatan to get briefed on the Fact Finding Mission. We will be divided into three groups to go to Southern Tagalog, Central Luzon and Cordilliera. They are sending us to areas that local human rights activists have not been able to reach due to militarization and persecution.

On November 16th, we will all be attending the two-year commemoration of the Hacienda Luicita massacre in Central Luzon, before continuing on to our respective areas. One team will stay in Central Luzon and visit areas where there are reports of aleged "suicides" by people who were previously tortured, as well as other cases.

Southern Tagalog is a hotbed of trade union activities, as it is also a very industrialized area, and now highly militarized. A group of 60 people will make up the team there, including the delegation from Canada.

I will be going to Abra in Cordilliera where we will be doing documention of new human rights violation cases. Cordi has a militant history of resistance to colonialism and neocolonialism over the last two centuries (or more), and is super organized. I'm very excited to visit the area and find out more about their struggles.

Each team will have a media team from the region to accompany them, which is a relief!

Tomorrow we will visit Ka Bel, a progressive congressman from the Anakpawis party list ( a party representing workers and peasants) who was arrested on charges of rebellion. He is currently being held at the Heart Hospital.

Ok, my first blog entry ever is coming to an end. I've lost a day and I have no idea what time it is in Vancouver, but it's definitely bed time here!



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