Mar 032013
 

PRESS RELEASE

October 1, 2008

One hundred groups call for US troops’ withdrawal from Mindanao

October 1 – As Congress investigates US military presence and actions in the Philippines, over one hundred organizations have come together to demand the “immediate withdrawal” of US military forces from Mindanao in the southern Philippines.

Saying that the US’ involvement in the war “can no longer be denied,” the groups said in a common statement that the US “further contributes to escalating and exacerbating the violence and insecurity in Mindanao, drawing parties towards all-out war, away from a just and peaceful resolution.”

Among the signatories were youth, students’, workers’, womens’, farmers’, artists’ and professional groups – including Christian and Muslim organizations. There were non-government organizations, human rights, relief and humanitarian groups, political parties, social movements, as well as networks and coalitions which bring together dozens of grassroots organizations coming from Mindanao but also beyond.

Disputing official explanations as untenable, the groups said: “In joining Filipino troops in their operations, providing them information, locating bombs, rescuing casualties, or giving technical assistance, the US military is clearly involved in actual combat in the Philippines. In stationing troops and equipment in various military facilities in the south, the US has established permanent basing in the country.”

To resolve the conflict in Mindanao, the groups call for an agreement “that would genuinely advance the Moro’s and the indigenous people’s right to self-determination — as they themselves define it, free from others’ imposition and intervention.”#

Reference:  Atty Cora Fabros +639178871153  corafabros2000@yahoo.com

======  SIGN-ON

US Troops Out of Mindanao; Genuine Self-Determination for Moros Now

The United States’ involvement in the war in Mindanao can no longer  be denied. Several times in the last month, at the height of  Philippine military offensives against Moro fighters, US soldiers  were repeatedly seen with Filipino troops, helping recover bombs,  evacuating casualties, or joining Filipino troops in Philippine  military camps throughout Mindanao. The Philippine military itself  categorically confirmed that the US military has been providing it  with “technical assistance” in pursuit of Moro rebels.

All these continue a pattern of reports that have accumulated in the  last few years: Just in February, a Filipino general confirmed that  it was the crew of a US spy plane that provided the intelligence  which resulted in an operation in which eight civilians, including a  pregnant woman and two children, were killed in Maimbung, Sulu.

The latest revelations that the US has been expanding its military  structures in Zamboanga City not only confirm what we have been  warning against; they heighten our concern that the US intends to  stay in the Philippines for the long-haul.

In joining Filipino troops in their operations, providing them  information, locating bombs, rescuing casualties, or giving technical  assistance, the US military is clearly involved in actual combat in  the Philippines. In stationing troops and equipment in various  military facilities in the south, the US has established permanent  basing in the country.

Not only is this patently unconstitutional, it also further  contributes to escalating and exacerbating the violence and  insecurity in Mindanao, drawing parties towards all-out war, away  from a just and peaceful resolution.

We therefore demand that US troops immediately withdraw from all of  Mindanao and that no US troops be involved in any operations.

We likewise demand that the Philippine military desists from further  military offensives, that it immediately pulls out its troops from  the region, and that it returns to the negotiating table.

We oppose the arming of civilians by the Philippine government and  demand the immediate disbandment of militias and private armies.

We denounce the targeting and killing of innocent civilians by any  side and we demand justice and reparations for all those who have  been killed, displaced, and affected by the war.

To address the root causes of the war, we support an agreement that  would genuinely advance the Moro’s and the indigenous people’s right  to self-determination — as they themselves define it, free from  others’ imposition and intervention. This entails recognizing and  respecting the Bangsamoro people’s right to self-rule.

In any agreement, the indigenous peoples’ rights must at all times be  assured and protected through specific provisions and measures. While  we call for the indigenous people’s rights not to be subsumed under  those of the Bangsamoro, we oppose efforts to set one oppressed  people against another and we refuse to allow one oppressed peoples’  rights to be used to deprive another people of theirs.

Narrow vested interests of local and foreign powers should not be  allowed to stand in the way of guaranteeing the universal right to  self-determination. For it is only by advancing the right to self- determination of the Bangsamoro and the indigenous peoples that  lasting peace and justice can be achieved.#

STOP THE WAR! COALITION- PHILIPPINES

1 October 2008

 

MEMBERS:

AKBAYAN! Citizens’ Action Party

Akbayan! Youth

Alab Katipunan (AK)

Alliance of Genuine Labor Organizations (AGLO)

Alliance of Progressive Labor (APL)

ALMANA

Alyansa ng Nagkakaisang Lakas ng Kabataan (ALYANSA)

Alyansa ng Sambayanan para sa Agarang Reporma (ASAP)

Anak Mindanao (AMIN)

APPRA

ASSALAM Bangsamoro

ASSALAM Party

Bagong Kamalayan Collective, Inc (BKCI)

Balay Rehabilitation Center Inc.

Bangsamoro People’s Solidarity

Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP)

Coalition Against Trafficking of Women Asia Pacific (CATW-AP)

Community Organizing and Rural Development, Inc. (Billah Islam)

Filipino Democratic Movement (FILDEM)

FOCUS on the Global South

Freedom from Debt Coalition (FDC)

Gathering for Peace (GfP)

GZO Peace Institute

Institute for Popular Democracy (IPD)

International South Group Network (ISGN)

Juan Makata

Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Commission-AMRSP

K! Kalayaan NCR-BLC

KAAKBAY AFDM

KALAYAAN!

KANLUNGAN

Kilusan para sa Pambansang Demokrasya (KPD)

Kongreso ng Mamamayan Para sa Kalayaan (KOMPAK)

Laban ng Masa (LnM)

League of Urban Poor for Action (LUPA)

Liga Manggagawa (LM)

Lolas Kampanyera WW II Filipina “Comfort Women” Survivors of Japanese

Military Sexual Slavery

MAKABAYAN Pilipinas

Manggagawa para sa Kalayaan ng Bayan (MAKABAYAN)

Mindanao Peoples’ Peace Movement (MPPM)

Moro Human Rights Center

Movement for the Advancement of Student Power (MASP)

Pagkakaisa ng Kababaihan para sa Inang Bayan (KAISA-KA)

Pambansang Kaisahan ng Magbubukid sa Pilipinas (PKMP)

Pambansang Katipunan ng Makabayang Magbubukid (PKMM)

Pambansang Katipunan ng mga Samahan sa Kanayunan (PKSK)

Partido Manggagawa (PM)

Peace Women Partners

People’s Task Force for Bases Clean UP Philippines

Philippine Peace and Security Council (PPSC)

Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM)

Pinay Kilos! (PINK!)

Progresibong Alyansa ng Mangingisda (PANGISDA)

Progressive Organization of Worker Advocates (PRO-WORKER)

Resource Center for People’s Development (RCPD)

Samahan ng Demokratikong Kabataan (SDK)

SANLAKAS

Solidarity of Unions and Labor Organizations for a New Government

(SULONG)

Strategic Initiatives of Pinoys Abroad – Bangkok (SIPA)

Student Council Alliance of the Philippines (SCAP)

Task Force Food Sovereignty (TFFS)

Task Force Subic Rape (TFSR)

Teatrong Bayan

Third World Movement Against the Exploitation of Women (TW-MAE-W)

Tulung Lupah Sug, Inc.,

UP Alyansa ng mga Mag-aaral para sa Panlipunang Katwiran at Kaunlaran

(UP ALYANSA)

UP Assabiyah

WEDPRO Inc.

Women and Gender Commission AMRSP

Women and Gender Institute (WAGI)

Women’s Legal Bureau, Inc (WLB)

YES to Change

Young Moro Professionals Network (YMPN)

Youth for Nationalism and Democracy (YND)

 

ENDORSED BY (as of 1 October 2008):

Alyansa ng Kabataang Mindanao para sa Kapayapaan (AKMK)

Action and Solidarity for the Empowerment of Teachers (ASSERT)

BUKLOD Women’s Center

Bukluran ng Progresibong Magbubukid sa Pilipinas (BPMP)

Institute of Political Studies

Jihad-al-Akbar

Kalipunan ng Maliliit na Magniniyog ng Pilipinas (KAMMPIL)

Lanao Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (LAHRA)

LAWS

Malaya Lolas

Manilenyo Kontra Abuso (MKA)

Metro Subic Network

Mindanao Peoples’ Caucus

Mindanao Tri-People Women Forum

Mindanao Tri-People Youth Center (MTPYC)

Philippine Women’s Network on Peace and Security (PWNPS)

Ranaw Disaster Response & Rehabilitation Assistance Center (RDRRAC),

Inc.

SALIGAN-Mindanaw

SARILAYA (Kasarian-Kalayaan)

Sumpay Mindanao, Inc. (SMI)

Sustainable Alternatives for the Advancement of Mindanao (SALAM, Inc.)

Transform Asia

Tulung Lupah Sug, Inc.

Union of Filipino Socialists (BISIG)

Welga ng Kababaihan

WomanHealth Philippines

Za-COPA

 

/Individuals/

Concepcion Asis, independent political consultant

Fr. Archie Casey SX

Warina Sushil Jukuy

Helen N. Mendoza, SOLJUSPAX

Reena B. Marcelo, 3RG-Phils

Sister Arnold Maria Noel,SSpS

 

[To add your group to this list, send an e-mail to info@focusweb.org

with your organization/personal name.]

 

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