Philippine Government: Stop the Violence and Killings of Indigenous Peoples by Paramilitary Groups

This petition was delivered to:

Secretary, Department of Justice
Ms. Leila M. De Lima
President Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III
Chairperson, Commission on Human Rights
Hon. Loretta Ann Rosales
Chairperson, National Commission on Indigenous Peoples
Ms. Zenaida Brigida H. Pawid
NCIP Commissioner, Southern & Eastern Mindanao (Region XI & XIII)
Hon. Roque N. Agton Jr.

Philippine Government: Stop the Violence and Killings of Indigenous Peoples by Paramilitary Groups

    1. Petition by

      Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development

The Philippine government has an obligation to take swift action in investigating the murders and human rights violations of Indigenous Peoples (IP) by paramilitary groups and resolutely disband them.  These groups have robbed IP communities of their right to protest destructive economic development on their ancestral lands, without facing harassment, brutal force and death by companies wishing to silence them. 

Recent examples of the cascading series of human rights violations:

On 30, June, 2011, two members of Higaonon IP organisation Linundigan were killed by members of the paramilitary group Salakawan, after a claim was made for their ancestral land by one of Salakawan’s members, Laging Binsalan. Datu Lapugotan and Solte San-ogan were fatally shot when Lapugotan’s home was attacked while the family, including his wife, four children aged one to 14 years old, and nephew San-ogan, were sleeping.  In September 2009, Lapugotan’s brother Dat Mampaagi was also murdered by paramilitary groups, when he opposed the entry of mining companies in their ancestral domains. 

Following the attacks, both widows of Lapugotan and Mampaagi, Mayse Belayong and Bae Adelfa, were threatened by the paramilitary groups and have had to relocate to safe houses, and find new livelihoods.  Other women community members have also been forced to seek shelter from the conflict area, with men staying behind to farm. The women consequently carry the burden of establishing new homes for their families and begin rebuilding their community.

We call on President Aquino and the Philippine government, including the Commission on Human Rights, the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples and the Department of Justice to:

- Investigate the murders of Datu Lapugotan, Solte San-ogan and Datu Mampaagi by paramilitary groups;

- Investigate the threats made against women in the community, charge those responsible and provide reparations to the survivors and the families of the victims;

- Investigate the other cases of extrajudicial killings, harassment and torture of Indigenous Peoples;

- Disband and disarm paramilitary groups in Indigenous Peoples communities;

- Uphold its commitment to international standards, including the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (Art.32, sec.2).

We stand by the rights of the Indigenous Peoples to their ancestral domains and to their right to self-determination, and support their struggle for the integrity of their culture and traditions. 

As these human rights violations continue to escalate, immediate action is necessary.

This petition is with the support of Madagway Babaeyon, a non-governmental IP organisation, a partner of AMIHAN Northern Mindanao for various campaigns for women's human rights. Madagway Babaeyon is also a member of the International Women's Alliance.

Madagway Babaeyon works for the empowerment of Lumad women in their defense of their Ancestral Domains against development aggressions that destroy their lands and consequently transgress against the very fabric of their culture which is primarily dependent on nature.

Recent signatures


    1. 1 more week to share your voice against violence and killings!

      Help us get to our goal of 1,000 signatures and let the Philippine Government know they must stop paramilitary groups.

    2. 57th victim extrajudicial killings- paramilitary group members responsible

      Italian missionary Fr. Fausto Tentorio killed Oct. 17 and Ramon Batoy, a peasant farmer in Arakan Valley, killed on Oct. 20. Batoy. He was killed by alleged members of 57th Infantry Batallion.

    3. Private companies approved to fund military-organized militias

      Madagway Babaeyon condemns the government’s move of institutionalizing paramilitaries!

      PNoy’s approval of the Philippine Army’s proposal to have private companies fund military-organized militias will only increase the culture of violence in the already war-torn Lumad (Indigenous Peoples) communities in Mindanao.

      “This is an insult to us who have been demanding for justice for years,” said Bae Adelfa Belayong, chairperson of Madagway and the widow of Datu Mampaagi, a victim of paramilitaries in 2009.
      “Arming more civilians – more Lumads – would only worsen the arrogance of companies to trample our rights,” Bae Adelfa said. “What the government should do is look into these operations on the ground. Why is there so much violence?"

      The organization also opposes the lifting of the mining permit moratorium which will only increase the aggressiveness of the government in clearing the communities which oppose these extractive industries.

    4. 6 human rights defenders go into hiding after murders

      Paramilitary groups continue to harass and threaten Linundigan: 11 October 2011, six leading members of Linundigan went into hiding as they were facing imminent risks of being targeted by paramilitary forces.

    5. Reached 500 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • jiten yumnam IMPHAL, AP
      • almost 3 years ago

      Stop all forms of discrimination and human rights violations targetting women and children among indigenous communities in the Philippines

      • almost 3 years ago


    • Chandra Kulung KATHMANDU, NEPAL
      • almost 3 years ago

      Ancestral land of Indigenous Peoples must not be occupied by the government to respect their human rights.

    • Thavro Chin PHNOM PENH, MO
      • almost 3 years ago

      Strong support for this petition

    • Muki Garang NAIROBI, KENYA
      • almost 3 years ago

      Because i abhor abuse and violation of human rights


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