Karapatan

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Karapatan, which translates as rights, is a human rights non-governmental organization in the Philippines. The full name of the group is KARAPATAN: Alliance for the Advancement of People's Rights.

History[edit]

The organization's General Secretary, Marie Hilao-Enriquez, is a strong advocate for human rights in the Philippines and internationally. As the mandate of President Gloria Macapal-Arroyo has witnessed over 830 political killings, including a bishop, Alberto Ramento, and a state of emergency in February 2006. Further, the group has documented many cases of political killings and harassment and submitted them to the Joint Monitoring Committee (JMC) of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front (NDFP). In March 2007, in the capacity of representing KARAPATAN, she presented on the extra-judicial political killings before the United States East Asian and Pacific Affairs Subcommittee chaired by US Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Cal).[1]

On the eve of the Nov 01-02, 2007 PUNO summit, Karapatan said the judiciary could come up with effective solutions to the problem by asking first Malacañang to drop its counterinsurgency policy. “Why focus on the solutions if they would not look into or address first the real cause behind the atrocities, which we believe is the police of the Arroyo administration,” said Karapatan chair Dr. Edelina de la Paz. At the Manila Hotel summit, a three-member team from Karapatan will give a 15-minute presentation showing the “systematic plan” carried out by the military against suspected rebels. Although the summit is a welcome development, it will not end the widespread killings and disappearances of civilians, said Karapatan-Caraga lawyer Jose Begil Jr. Karapatan lawyer Rex Fernandez lauded Puno for initiating the summit, “a first step in a thousand-mile journey toward peace.”[2]

Criticism[edit]

Accusations of propaganda[edit]

On Nov 01, 2007, Military Chief General Hermogenes Esperon IV accused Karapatan of insincerity in stopping killings due to its refusal to cooperate in government investigations. Esperon also reiterated that KARAPATAN has always been and will use "propaganda measures" that allegation of government security forces were behind the over 800 extrajudicial killings it has recorded since 2010: "After they hurl these allegations, they refuse to go to court or the investigative bodies. What's this? Do they believe in the judicial process, in the rule of law? Or are they engaged in propaganda?" They used the strategy of AROUSE, ORGANIZE, MOBILIZE in accordance to the organization and members they are protecting, the CPP-NPA-NDF. They are using the human rights advocacy to advance their cause of grabbing political power to duly-elected government and replace it with socialist-communist system. KARAPATAN will always discredit the government by hurling deceiving and untruthful statements.[3]

References[edit]

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