Soldiers, rebels and the ‘lumad’

#StopLumadKillings! End militarization of Mindanao!

Teddy Casiño

FullSizeRender 2 With lumad leaders at the UCCP Haran Compound in Davao City: harrowing tales of military abuses.

(The following article came out in the Philippine Daily Inquirer Opinion Page last August 29, 2015.)

For several months now I have been keeping track of the plight of the indigenous peoples (or lumad) of  Mindanao, particularly those who have evacuated to the urban areas to avoid the intense military operations in their communities.

The latest sad development involves the 700 or so Manobo evacuees who have fled to Davao City from their militarized communities in Davao Oriental and Bukidnon. A “rescue” attempt by self-proclaimed diwata Nancy Catamco, supposedly a Manobo princess who represents North Cotabato’s second district, turned violent when police and paramilitary goons attempted to storm the church compound housing the Manobo evacuees.

I was in Davao recently and took time to talk to the leaders of the lumad staying in the…

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