Women’s groups call for release of two women political prisoners



MANILA – Progressive women’s group Gabriela trooped to Camp Crame of the Philippine National Police on Tuesday, April 22 to demand for the immediate release of National Democratic Front of the Philippines’ consultant Wilma Austria-Tiamzon and Andrea Rosal, daughter of the late spokesman of the Communist Party of the Philippines Gregorio “Ka Roger” Rosal.

The women’s group said Tiamzon and Rosal should be released on humanitarian grounds. According to Gabriela, Tiamzon is suffering from severe asthma and spinal bone degeneration. Rosal is nine months pregnant and is currently detained at the Camp Bagong Diwa in Bicutan.



“The conditions inside the detention facilities where Tiamzon and Rosal are detained aggravate their health situation and put them at great risk,” said Joms Salvador, secretary general of Gabriela. She added that Tiamzon is in need of immediate medical attention and so is Rosal who is about to give birth anytime soon. “As such, we assert that Tiamzon and Rosal be immediately released.”

Gabriela and the Karapatan chapter in Southern Tagalog also demanded for the immediate transfer of Rosal to a hospital facility.

Salvador also slammed officials of Camp Crame for initially not granting their request to visit Tiamzon. Salvador said they sent their request last April 3. Salvador and some members of the group were only able to visit Tiamzon because of the presence of media during the protest action, almost three weeks after they submitted their request.

“Whether it is bureaucratic red tape or intentional delay, the PNP has stepped on Tiamzon’s right to be visited and our right to visit even she has a health condition that needs special attention,” Salvador said.

The group also called on President Benigno S. Aquino III to resume peace talks with the NDFP. “If the President is sincere in attaining peace in our country, then the government should resume peace talks and return to the negotiating table,” Salvador said.

They also called for the release of all political prisoners. “While plunderers and fascists remain free, the state has been picking on civilians, activists and NDFP consultants. We call for the release of all political detainees now and we condemn the use of fascism and repression by the state to suppress the just calls of the people.

Text and photos by Anne Marxze D. Umil

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