Our Land, Our Rights, Our Peace: Philippines leaders visit Canada, March 20-April 5


Philippine Learning Tour
Filipino Delegation to appeal for Open for Justice and support for peace process, March 20 – April 5                         

KAIROS is hosting a five-person delegation from the Philippines, March 20 to April 5. The delegates will visit several Canadian cities to speak about human rights violations in the context of mining projects, including Canadian-owned operations. They are also hoping to build support for the ongoing peace talks between the Government of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front. The tour includes stops in Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto and Montreal.

The delegation includes the following political, faith and Indigenous leaders:

  • Bishop Antonio Ablon, Anglican Church/IFI, Zamboanga del Sur
  • Carlos Zarate, Member of Philippine Congress/Bayan Muna PartyList
  • Anie Bautista, National Coordinator, Ecumenical Voice for Peace and Human Rights in the Philippines (EcuVoice)
  • Nenita Condez, Indigenous woman leader from Mindanao
  • Eufemia Campos Cullamat, Indigenous youth leader from Mindanao

The goals of the delegation are:

To raise awareness and understanding of how human rights violations and violence in Bayog and other communities in the Philippines are linked to resources extraction, including by Canadian companies, and contribute to conflict between government forces and liberation groups.

National security policies implemented by the Philippine government to protect foreign (including Canadian) investments and large scale development projects are contributing to increased poverty and conflict, and having a negative impact on the social, cultural, economic and political rights of the Filipino people.

To generate and mobilize public and Canadian diplomatic support for the ongoing peace talks in the Philippines, which include addressing the root causes of conflict and poverty.

As one of Canada’s most important trade partners in Asia, the Government of Canada should play an important role in securing justice and lasting peace in the Philippines by supporting the formal peace talks between the Government of the Philippines, the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP), and Moro liberation groups.

To advocate for the KAIROS/Canadian Network of Corporate Accountability Open for Justice campaign which is calling on the Government of Canada to appoint an extractive-sector Ombudsperson to monitor Canadian mining operations overseas, and to facilitate access to the Canadian courts for non-nationals who have been harmed by the international operation of Canadian companie

Due to the connection between human rights violations, conflict, and resource extraction activities, including by Canadian-owned companies, mining-affected communities in the Philippines will benefit from an extractive-sector Ombudsperson and access to justice in Canada.

Background

In 2014, KAIROS Canada’s Philippine Learning Tour (PLT) visited communities in Bayog, Zamboanga del Sur impacted by the mining operations of TVI Resource Development Inc. (TVIRD), the Philippine subsidiary of Calgary based TVI Pacific, Inc.

After gathering information on TVIRD’s operations from community members, TVIRD representatives and government officials, the PLT called on the Philippine government to investigate all claims of human rights abuses and to cease all mining operations until the safety of the local people was assured. It also called on the Government of Canada to appoint an extractive-sector Ombudsperson and to provide legislated access to Canadian courts for those harmed by the international operations of Canadian resource extraction companies.

For more information, please contact:
Connie Sorio, Asia-Pacific Partnerships Coordinator, KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives
Email: csorio@kairoscanada.org  | Tel: 416-463-5312, ext.


Filed in: Ecological Justice, Indigenous Rights, Asia-Pacific

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