Year One of the Ampatuan Massacre: Rage for Justice! End Impunity Now! (PR)

Alliance against Impunity in Mindanao

November 23, 2010: Year One of the Ampatuan Massacre

WE remember …
This day, we remember the 58 lives— the 32 journalists, two human rights lawyers, and other civilians— lost on November 23, 2009 to one of the world’s worst incidents of impunity in recent history.

WE rage …
We have come together in solidarity with the families, whom we have met through the course of a year, felt and shared their pain of losing their spouse, their child, their sibling, and shared their longing for justice.

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We rage that justice seems buried with the dead. We rage that the Ampatuans continue to wield power, evade imprisonment and trial, and reportedly try to bribe and intimidate witnesses. We rage that the government has not taken decisive action to protect witnesses and ensure a speedy trial of the accused.

We rage that the state of impunity continues until now even under a new administration that promises to bring us to the “right path.” That path is tainted with blood, as more journalists continue to be killed, as the Morong 43 health workers continue to be illegally imprisoned, as botanists like Leonardo Co are shot and killed indiscriminately by the military, as community nurses like “Florence” are raped by those who are in power, and as more human rights defenders are getting more and more defenseless.

And we rage that the previous Gloria Macapagal Arroyo administration that has nurtured warlordism, militarism, and human rights violations, remains scot free for crimes against humanity.

WE challenge…
We demand from this new administration to show its resolve to fulfill its electoral promise of bringing justice to the victims of the Ampatuan massacre. We demand for a speedy trial that is televised to the whole nation so that justice is not denied by a protracted legal battle that is bound to erase this crime from our collective memory as a people.

We demand for an end to this state of impunity by dismantling private armies, and ending militarization and Oplan Bantay Laya and other internal security policies that are responsible for the political killings and persecution of activists, journalists, lawyers, human rights defenders, and ordinary civilians.

We call on President Benigno Aquino III to ensure the prosecution of Gloria Macapagal Arroyo for her accountability in the Ampatuan massacre, and for her rigged presidential victory in 2004 with the aid of the Ampatuan political machinery.

We make this call to President Aquino, together with the challenge for him to address the growing number of extrajudicial killings under his administration. Otherwise, and as the signs of the times already indicate, his avowed “right path” is the same bloodied path of the hated Arroyo regime.

Alliance against Impunity in Mindanao

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