30 June 2010
Greetings! The Philippine Organizing Committee which is hosting this year’s Conference of Lawyers in the Asia-Pacific (COLAP) wishes to invite you to attend the Fifth COLAP to be held at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia, Manila on September 18-19, 2010.
COLAP will be attended by lawyers, jurists, law professors and law students as well as the academe and NGOs from the Asia Pacific Region including Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States. It is equally open to interested participants from other countries outside the region. It is regularly organized by the International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL), an NGO with consultative status with ECOSOC and UNICEF. The first COLAP was held in 1988 in New Delhi, India. COLAP II was held in Tokyo, Japan in 1991 while COLAP III was held in Hanoi, Vietnam in 2001. COLAP IV was last held in Seoul, South Korea in 2005.
The theme of COLAP V is Human Rights and Peace Amidst Global Economic Crisis and Conflict. The conference brings together progressive lawyers and other human rights advocates to discuss issues of human rights, development and peace in the region. We expect around 200 foreign delegates and 100 local delegates. We have invited luminaries and experts as speakers and resource persons around the globe from the legal profession and other disciplines.
Attached to this letter is further information on COLAP V. For more queries, please write the COLAP Secretariat at colapV2010@gmail.com or colapV2010@yahoo.com. You could also contact us at telephone number +632 9206660 or fax number +632 9272812. Should you wish to register for attendance, please consult our website at http://colap.wordpress.com .
Kindly consider this as our formal invitation to you for also visa purposes as may be necessary.
Please feel free to forward this invitation letter to fellow progressive lawyers and human rights advocates. The Conference Secretariat remains at your disposal should you have any further information you may need.
Very truly yours,
ATTY. EDRE U. OLALIA
Head, Philippine Organizing Committee for COLAP V
Acting Secretary General, National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers in the Philippines (NUPL)
Bureau Member, International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL)
Additional Information on COLAP V
COLAP V aims to provide a forum for lawyers, law students and other peace and human rights advocates from the region to:
Discuss and deepen understanding of the human rights and peace situation in the Asia-Pacific in the context of international recession;
Share experiences in the struggle for human rights and peace and draw lessons from such experiences; and
Bring to the attention of the region vital issues that affect human rights and peace at the international and global regional levels.
Day 0: Sept. 17 (Friday)
Registration of Delegates
Day 1: Sept. 18 (Saturday)
Introduction to COLAP V
Introduction of Delegates
Messages from the International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL) and the Host Country
Impact of the Global Economic Crisis and Conflict on Human Rights in the Asia-Pacific
Impact of Global Economic Crisis and Conflict on Peace and Human Development in the Asia-Pacific
Alternative Lawyering as a Tool for Human Rights Protection
Workshop I U.S. Aggression and Military Intervention in the Asia-Pacific
(Impact on policy of Obama’s presidency)
Workshop II Impact and Implications on Civil and Political Rights
Workshop III Impact and Implications on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights
Workshop IV Developing and Ensuring an Independent Judiciary and Legal Profession
Workshop V Impact on Women and Children
Caucus of Law Students
Official Dinner by Host Country
Day 2: Sept. 19 (Sunday)
Workshop VI Assessing National, Regional and International Human Rights Mechanisms
Workshop VII Fighting Against Corruption in Public Office for Good Governance
Workshop VIII Threats to Peace and Peace-Building in the Asia-Pacific
Workshop IX Assessing Laws Concerning the Environment and their Implementation
Special Seminar – Host Country Situation: The Philippines
SMX, Mall of Asia, Pasay City, Metro-Manila, Philippines. It has a view of the famous Manila sunset by the bay. It is near the airport and is in the midst of the commercial and business area. It is also accessible to the media, representatives of peoples’ organizations and other guests.
The conference proper of COLAP V will be on September 18-19, 2010. Delegates have the option to stay longer after the conference to attend major human rights activities scheduled in the period and/or venture into alternative tourism. The Host Secretariat will circulate information about them later.
A list of hotels near the conference venue will be circulated later so delegates can make their reservations directly via the internet. Hotel daily rates range from USD 50–75 per person. Those who need assistance may contact the Host Secretariat.
Registration Fees (For questions, please contact the Host Secretariat.)
|Before August 1, 2010||From August 1, 2010|
|Academe||USD 100||USD 150|
|NGO||USD 80||USD 120|
|Law Students||USD 50||USD 100|
|* Lawyer for 10 years or more
** Lawyer for less than 10 years
The Philippines has no pre-travel visa requirement for those coming from the ASEAN countries and the United States, Canada, Australia and Japan as well as most of Europe. Examples of countries with visa requirements are North and South Korea and those from South and Central Asia. The Host Committee will issue later a more complete and updated list of countries with and without visa requirements.
Those coming from countries covered by visa requirements may apply under the Expedited Visa Program announced recently by the Philippine Bureau of Immigration. It is available in the bureau’s website. Delegates who need assistance will please get in touch with the Host Secretariat.
For more information, please contact:
Philippine Organizing Committee
COLAP V Host Secretariat
c/o NUPL (National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers)
3/F Erythrina Building, # 1 Maaralin Street cor. Matatag Street
Central District, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines
Phone: 63 2 9206660 Telefax: 63 2 9272812
Posted on 02 Jul 2010
The National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers (NUPL) today condemns the Israeli attack, in international waters, on the aid convoy headed to Gaza that left at least 19 civilians dead and dozens injured, and called on the international community to immediately penalize Israel.
NUPL Acting Secretary General Atty. Edre U. Olalia said in a statement, “The attack by Israel is patently illegal, because it was unprovoked and excessive. It is more so inhuman because they
attacked an international “Freedom Flotilla” bent on delivering aid to civilians in Palestine’s Gaza strip.
“The sheer size and brawn of the Israeli raiding team tells us that the attack was not only to stop the delivery, but to stop all humanitarian aid deliveries in the future. The Israelis confronted the aid convoy in bad faith. They intend to send a chilling effect, a message that they do not want humanitarian aids to come in Palestine.”
He added, “The international community has a stake in this matter because this was done in international waters. Tolerating such act would further embolden Israel’s sense of impunity
and for sure, there will be a next time – perhaps more violent – if the international community does nothing about the attack.”
Atty. Olalia, who is also the President of the International Association of Peoples’ Lawyers (IAPL), explained that under International Law, the entitlement to self-defense under Article 51 of the United Nations Charter is subject to the conditions of necessity and proportionality.
Under the policy of anticipatory self-defense, any nation facing a threat considered to be “instant, overwhelming, leaving no choice of means and no moment of deliberation,” is justified in launching a counter-attack to prevent any harm from happening.
Atty. Olalia said the Israeli attack fails to satisfy this criterion and thus, must be held liable for violating the UN charter. He also pushed the UN council to immediately penalize Israel for
what it did. Israel is a charter member of the UN, while Palestine, which is not considered as a member state, sits in permanent observer mission.
Yesterday, the UN Security Council called for impartial, credible investigation of the Israeli boat raid. The Council requested the immediate release of the ships as well as the civilians
held by Israel. The council also called for a prompt, impartial, credible and transparent investigation conforming to international standards.
The council statement also reemphasized the importance of implementing U.N. Resolution 1860, which calls for the unimpeded provision and distribution of humanitarian assistance to
Gaza’s 1.5 million residents. The flow of aid has been severely hampered by Israel’s three-year blockade on the Gaza Strip. “Sanctions such as an embargo on aid or even UN military force may be used on Israel, a prominent violator of human rights and war criminal. The UN at large must also resist the pressure by allies US and the European Union against such measures. Otherwise Israel will continue on its rampage against other countries it deems threat to its
interests,” Atty. Olalia said.
Last year, a United Nations commissioned report by South African justice Richard Goldstone highlighted Israeli violations during the war in Gaza. Goldstone’s findings found both Israel and Hamas guilty of war crimes during the conflict. Atty. Olalia also noted that there might also be individual human rights violations. Reports have revealed that the lawyers for those in the flotilla were not given access to information about their clients, and are only being allowed access, for those in detention already, for three hours every day from 1:00-4:30 pm.
Yesterday, Israeli-licensed attorneys filed two habeas briefs: one is asking for to release the passengers and the boats, and the other asking for information on all of the passengers, because there has been a total blackout on where the passengers are, who was wounded and who was murdered.
The Turkish vessel Mavi Marmara and the European Campaign’s vessel Spendoni, part of the now-called “Freedom Flotilla”, were carrying 10,000 tons of humanitarian aid in defiance of an Israeli embargo on Gaza. The convoy came from the UK, Ireland, Algeria, Kuwait, Greece and Turkey, and was comprised of about 700 people from 50 nationalities.
Atty. Edre U. Olalia – 01975113373
Atty. Julius Matibag – 09279293089
Posted on 03 Jun 2010 at nupl.net