FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 18, 2019
Filipinos in the U.S. Gather Together
vs ‘Duterte’s Fascism’
Announcing National Summit for Human Rights and Democracy in the Philippines
WHO: MALAYA: US Movement Against Killings and Dictatorship and for Democracy in the Philippines.
WHAT: We invite you to join us on April 6th to 8th, , 2019 in Washington D.C. for the historic National Summit for Human Rights and Democracy in the Philippines. This gathering aims to bring hundreds of individuals and organizations from different sectors and across the United States to discuss the major issues and concerns of the Filipino people, as well as deepen our unity in our struggle against the rising Duterte dictatorship.
WHEN: April 6-8th:
- April 6th- National Summit
- April 7th- Unity meetings
- April 8th- Mobilization & Lobby Days
WHERE: Washington D.C.
This gathering comes at a very important moment. In just two and half years, the world has witnessed the unfolding of a fascist regime in the Philippines under President Rodrigo Duterte. The Duterte regime unleashed a slew of anti-people policies such as the TRAIN law which has led to a 6.4% inflation rate – the highest in a decade, the attacks on press freedom with the arrest of Maria Ressa of Rappler, the seemingly endless Drug War that has killed as high as 27,000 killings, the continuing crackdown on dissent and the assassination of activists, priests, farmers, and indigenous people, and now the extension of Martial Law in Mindanao. We have also seen the betrayal of our national sovereignty with the sell-out of the West Philippine Sea. With the midterm elections approaching in May, we can expect escalating cases of violence and corruption as Duterte seeks to consolidate his power and legitimize his regime at all costs. Now more than ever, it’s important we stand together for human rights, genuine democracy and sovereignty in the Philippines.
Our keynote speaker will be Father Benjamin E. Alforque, a leading convener of the church-based Filipino group, Rise Up for Life and for Rights, a network of advocates and families of victims of drug-related killings in the Philippines. We will also be hosting guest speakers from the Philippines, national leaders from across the country, and leading experts in our various workshops. Following the summit, there will be an opportunity to participate in an action. This action aims to show our growing unity.
“There are so many things to say about President Duterte, his foul mouth, his machismo-fascism, but it is the number of deaths already under his regime that has made his name internationally infamous. More than 27,000 people have been killed for even just being a suspect in his notorious Drug War. He has become a true dictator when he can orchestrate such human rights violations in the blink of an eye and without repercussion. The People Power movement took down the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos. I’m asking you to join the growing movement against Duterte’s fascism and be part of making history!” Stated Giselle Tongi, National Malaya Movement Convener.
“The Duterte regime is notorious for its violation of Human Rights with its thousands of extra-judicial killings, the frame-up arrests,the tortures of prisoners and the illegal detention of critics. Human rights workers, church people, lawyers and activists have all become victims of the Duterte government. Pres. Duterte and his minions in the government and in the military have violated and continue to violate the constitutional rights of the people. We are appealing to compatriots and friends who want democracy to prevail to unite with the Filipino people and prevent a fascist dictatorship in the Philippines.” Added Dante Simbulan, National Malaya Movement Convener.
Now is the time to come together and build strength in unity.