Arrest of peasant and human rights leaders in Davao will mark Duterte’s first year

June 28, 2017

By Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas

Rabid fascist dogs Lorenzana, Ano are masterminds of human rights abuses
Arrest of peasant and human rights leaders in Davao will mark Duterte’s first year

“We condemn in strongest terms the illegal arrest of Davao-based peasant leaders Pedro Arnado, national auditor of Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas and chairperson of KMP-Southern Mindanao, Lito Lao of Unyon ng Manggagawa sa Agrikultura, Gerry Alborme of KMP-North Cotabato and Hanimay Suazo, secretary general of KARAPATAN-SMR,” says Antonio Flores, secretary general of KMP. As of this writing, the activist-leaders are currently being held by the Task Force Davao at a checkpoint in Davao City.

“We demand the immediate release of the activist-leaders,” Flores said.

“The continuing arrest and harassment of leaders of progressive organizations will mark Rodrigo Duterte’s first year in office. We hold the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), General Delfin Lorenzana and General Eduardo Ano accountable for the arrests and crackdown. Martial Law in Mindanao is also obviously directed against national democratic and progressive organizations opposing the government’s all-out war against the people,” Flores said.

Based on initial reports, the activist-leaders came from a meeting in Davao City when they were accosted by the Task Force Davao. The AFP recently accorded the Task Force Davao for leading the arrest of the Maute matriarch in Marawi City.

Arnado, Lao and Alborme are active in leading peasant struggles in the Southern Mindanao Region, the latest is the campaign for installation of the Madaum Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Inc (MARBAI) to the disputed banana plantation landgrabbed by Lapanday in Tagum City. KMP-SMR is also at the forefront of the campaign against killing of farmers, peasant leaders and Lumad in the region. KARAPATAN-SMR consistently condemned government-sponsored human rights abuses in the region that victimized farmers and indigenous peoples.