Supporting the call against human rights
violations and cases of impunity, CARRD is a proud supporter of Kilusang
Artikulo Trese (A.13), a human rights group composed of individuals and
organizations from the peasant, labor union, religious, and education sectors. Artikulo
13 stands for Article 13 of the 1987 Constitution, which contained basic
principles on social justice and human rights. CARRD has been actively
participating in A.13’s activities since its inception in 2017.
As an institution working with and for the farmers, we are concerned with the increasing number of peasants being killed in the guise of the War on Drugs. Many say that we have nothing to fear, but pushing back and standing up against the threat to our human rights – and lives – is only essential. With those insisting that these killings will hinder our society’s collapse, are we slowly losing the sense of right and wrong? With the barbarity happening left and right, will our society’s moral consciousness no longer be affected?
The war on drugs aimed to neutralize the use of illegal drugs nationwide, encouraging citizens to kill suspected drug dealers or users, and giving the police forces “shoot to kill” orders against organized criminals or those who resist arrest. In November, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has reported that 5,050 people have been killed since 2016, but human rights groups estimate over 20,000 deaths – most of which have been carried out vigilante-style.
Unfortunately receiving far less attention than the extrajudicial killings (EJKs) in the metro but equally alarming is the continuing killings of peasants, the most neglected and the most marginalized sector of the Philippine society. In 2017, it has been reportedthat the Philippines recorded the highest number of killings related to land conflicts and struggles which have huge potential for violence. Many of the farmers killed were community leaders, specifically targeted due to their pertinent roles in ongoing land disputes.
As to when the Philippine justice system takes genuine steps to prosecute those liable for these impunities, one can only hope.
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Quezon City, 1101, Philippines
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