Posted by: nupl | July 6, 2010

INTERNATIONAL LAWYERS GROUP CALLS FOR IMMEDIATE PROSECUTION OF ARROYO, et. al.

UTRECHT, The Netherlands (30 May 2010) – The International Association of People’s Lawyers (IAPL),  a worldwide grouping of  public interest and human rights lawyers, challenged  the incoming Philippine administration of presumptive president-elect  Sen. Benigno Aquino III  to  immediately and vigorously pursue all legal moves  to make accountable outgoing president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and her allies  for the crimes of plunder,  human rights violations like killings, disappearances, torture, other crimes against humanity and other high offenses against the Filipino  people.

Also passed during the end of the two-day IAPL  4th Congress were resolutions calling for the immediate release of  43 Filipino health workers illegally arrested and subjected to an array of human rights violations by security forces and the prosecution of all persons  complicit in the now internationally-condemned Ampatuan Massacre in Maguindanao province, Mindanao, the Philippines, among others.

The Congress was attended by some 35 lawyers, judges, paralegals and law students from Afghanistan, Brazil, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, the Philippines, and Turkey.

“As  an organization of people’s lawyers, we will make it certain that the outgoing Arroyo  government  will not escape prosecutions  and being accountable  for crimes committed against the people,” said  lawyer Edre Olalia, who was reelected as president of  IAPL.

“This is also a litmus test for Noynoy Aquino.  His attitude and policy towards human rights will be judged at the first instance on how he will pursue the prosecution and conviction  of Mrs. Arroyo, her family  members and allies who committed crimes against the people,” Olalia, who is also acting Secretary General of the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers (NUPL),  added.

Previously, the IAPL has already denounced the Arroyo government over its human rights record that  is marred by the killings of activists, lawyers, judges and journalists.

Carlos Zarate,  vice president for Mindanao of the NUPL,   said the “culture of impunity”  being promoted by the Arroyo government is the culprit behind the Ampatuan massacre that brutally claimed the lives of 57 civilians, including two lady members of the NUPL.     “The prosecution  for such monstrous act should not be limited only to the members of the Ampatuan clan and their  private army… it should also include police and military officials and other civilian authorities who are equally liable.”

The IAPL  is an organization  of peoples’ lawyers  in countries where there is oppression  of the people’s rights and where the struggle to fight the same is also intense. #30.

References:

Atty. Edre U.  Olalia +639175113373

Atty. Carlos I. Zarate +639177174014

Posted on 30 May 2010 at nupl.net
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