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STATEMENT: 5 Mamanwa protesters still missing

Five IP human rights defenders still missing since first day of anti mining barricade last January 29, 2009

The Philippine government must immediately look into the case of five Mamanwa tribesmen who remain missing since they disappeared on the first day of the barricade their community put up to block mining roads in their ancestral domain last January 29 in Barrangay Taganito, Claver, Surigao del Norte, Philippines.

The Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center – Kasama sa Kalikasan/FOE- Philippines (LRC-KsK) calls upon the Arroyo government to exert all its efforts in locating the five IP protesters and put to justice whoever caused their disappearance. In disappearance cases every minute counts, all concerned government agencies and personnel must be mobilized in order to protect the lives of these five Mamanwa community members.

LRC-KsK notes with concern the growing list of indigenous peoples victimized by human rights violations that have been perpetrated with impunity under the Arroyo government – especially that the targets have been IP community human rights defenders.

The 400 Mamanwa community members barricaded the mining roads connecting the mining site to the local seaport to protest decades of continued mining operations by four mining companies in their ancestral domain without the consent of the community, nor just compensation to the community. The five missing Mamanwa protesters went to look for food for the barricade after they helped put up makeshift shelters, they were not seen again even after a search conducted by community members.

The setting up of the protest barricade was known to the local police since they were informed of by the community last December that they were driven to this after repeated attempts of sending out notices of termination of mining operations as well as demands for just compensation proved futile.

LRC-KsK demands that the Arroyo government do away with its obsession for mining generated revenues in the face of overwhelming rejection of IP communities who have long borne the brunt of the destruction, displacement, discrimination and disempowerment that mining operations bring with it.

We support the Mamanwa community as they continue with their barricade in their stand for their rights against destructive development projects and undemocratic policies.


Recommended Action:

- Call on Philippines Authorities to locate and surface the five missing Mamanwas
- Call on Philippines Authorities to respect and protect the barricade of the Mamanwa
- Call on Philippines Authorities to scrap the Philippine Mining Act of 1995
- Call on Philippine Authorities to make sure that mining companies in Mamanwa ancestral domain respect indigenous peoples rights, give just compensation to the Mamanwa community and stop all mining operation

Appeals To:

The Chief of Police
Chief Director General Jesus Verzosa
Philippine National Police
Room 301 DND Building, Camp Emilio Aguinaldo,
E. de los Santos Avenue, Quezon City, Philippines
Email: pio@pnp.gov.This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it ph

The Chief of Staff (Armed Forces)
Gen. Alexander B. Yano
Chief of Staff, Armed Forces of the Philippines
Camp General Emilio Aguinaldo
Quezon City, Philippines
Email: via website: http://www.afp. mil.ph/ghq/ csafp/index. htm (follow link on left-hand side to guestbook)

The Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Jose "Lito" L. Atienza, Jr
Central Office: Visayas Avenue,
Diliman, 1100 Quezon City, Philippines
Email: web@denr.gov.This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it ph
Tel. Nos. (02) 928-06-91 TO 93
loc: 2003, 2008, 2135, 2201
2101, 2134, 2182, 2147
Email add: osec@denr.gov.This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it ph
The Mines and Gosciences Bureau Regional Director- Region 13

Km 2., Surigao City
Telefax No. (086)826-1058
e-mail: mgbrxiii@philcom. ph

Copies to:

1. The Chairperson of the Philippines Commission on Human Rights
Hon. Leila De Lima
SAAC Bldg., UP Complex
Commonwealth Avenue
Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines
Email: drpvq@chr.gov.This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it ph, atty_delima@ yahoo.com. ph

2. The Chairperson of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples
Atty. Eugenio A. Insigne
2nd Floor N. dela Merced Building,
Cor. West and Quezon Avenues,
Quezon City, Metro Manila

(63 2) 373-97-65

resource@ncip. gov.ph

www.ncip.gov. ph

-a 3. - and to diplomatic representatives of the Philippines accredited to your country. contact person: Romel Cardenas de Vera, LRC-KsK/FOE Philippines, fhfmel.devera@ lrcksk.org (MindaNews)

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