International Women’s Day Statement of the
Philippine Women's Network on Peace & Security
On the occasion of International Women’s Day, the Philippine Women's Network on Peace & Security condemns in the strongest possible way the continuing lack of human security for all Filipino people, especially women, children and the elderly. The ongoing Lozada expose and investigation of the ZTE scandal and bribery is but another event in the string of brazen violations of the Macapagal-Arroyo regime.
While everyone seems to be focused on the ZTE scandal, let us not forget that the presence of the US troops in the country particularly in Mindanao, and all the violations committed against our people in the guise of anti-terror war and as part of the Visiting Forces Agreement’s joint military exercises. We need to be vigilant in terms of the sustained presence of US troops in the country. We need to continue to expose and tell the truth, to paraphrase Lozada and all those who are supporting him. General Hermogenes Esperon said recently that the Philippines is studying the possibility of expanding joint military
exercises with the United States to include other anti-terror allies. Eight people including two children and a pregnant woman died during a military operation with alleged encounter with suspected Abu Sayyaf members, in Maimbung, Sulu last February. This is the most recent report on how civilian populations are affected by the war against “terrorism.”
Militarization has caused massive displacement of populations, and this massive displacement has in turn aggravated the marginalization and vulnerability of women. Each year countless women, men and children are displaced from their homes due to violent armed conflict, natural disasters, and human rights violations; approximately 80% are women. Militarization has made them extremely vulnerable to persecution, to discrimination, and to the physical discomfort, insecurity, and illnesses that result from being uprooted, evicted from their established zones of comfort.
The threats against Lozada and his family, and all those who wish to speak the truth of how this administration has muffled the voices of legitimate dissent, killed hundreds of activists, and mire this nation into a level of despair and impoverishment, contribute to the absence of genuine human security. Poverty and hunger continue to affect a growing number of Filipinos, affecting more deeply women and children and other vulnerable populations.
The PWNPS envisions a world of genuine security based on justice. We wish to contribute to the creation of a society free of militarism, violence, and all forms of sexual exploitation, in order to guarantee the rights of marginalized people, particularly women and children, and to ensure the safety, well-being, and long term sustainability of our communities.
Expose the bankruptcy and corruption of the GMA regime!
Oust GMA Now!
Mabuhay ang Kababaihang Pilipino!
PWNPS Member Organizations
· Amnesty International (AI)-Pilipinas
· Buklod Center
· Metro Subic
· People’s Task Force on Bases Clean Up (PTFBC)
· Women’s Education, Development, Productivity & Research Organization (WEDPRO)
· WomanHealth Philippines
Member, International Women’s Network for Genuine Security