Court issues Writ of Amparo for 2 CPA members; more members join petition
Joint-Statement of Cordillera Peoples Alliance and Cordillera Human Rights Alliance
The court’s issuance of Writ of Amparo for two members of the Cordillera Peoples Alliance (CPA) in Tadian, Mountain Province is a welcome ruling amid the relentless attacks against activists in the region.
We also acknowledge the Court of Appeals directive for the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict and other state security agencies to respond to the Writ of Amparo filed by members of the Cordillera Peoples Alliance on August 5, 2022.
In a recently released decision, Judge Sergio Angnganay, Jr. of RTC Branch 35 in Bontoc, Mountain Province prohibited the police and military from surveilling and monitoring sisters Analyn Bargue and Arlyn Battawang through a permanent protection order.
The ruling stemmed from the Writ of Amparo petition filed by the siblings, and George Kotyag in August 2021, against Sgt. Mark Anthony Estrella of the 69th Infantry Battalion and Herman Piayas of the Philippine National Police Special Action Force.
Their actions did not only threaten the life, liberty and security of the petitioners and their families when they were branded as NPA supporters, but also caused physical and psychological distress to the victims, families and community.
The RTC’s decision affirms that red-tagging translates to actual graver human rights violations against the victims. It upholds International Humanitarian Law principles that civilians should not be the subject of threats, including those with family members belonging to either party of the armed conflict.
We reiterate our call for state forces to respect human rights, and cease their malicious and vicious red-tagging rampage against activists and dissenters. We challenge the Marcos government to make red-taggers and peddlers of false information in the police and military accountable for endangering the lives of the people.
With another Amparo Petition set for deliberation at the Court of Appeals involving Cordillera activists, we are hopeful that the remedy will continue to serve its intended purpose – to protect individuals whose rights to life, liberty and security are violated or threatened by actions of the state or private entities. #
Cordillera Peoples Alliance