Human rights groups and families of two missing activists asked the Philippine Supreme Court to order state security forces to surface missing labor organizers who were allegedly arrested by the military.
A petition has been filed on Wednesday, August 10, seeking the issuance of a “writ of amparo” for Elizabeth “Loi” Magbanua and Alipio “Ador” Juat who are believed to be held in a military camp.
Named respondents were Armed Forces chief of staff Lt. Hen. Bartolome Vicente Bacarro, acting Defense chief Jose Faustino Jr., Intelligence Agency director Ricardo de Leon, and several military officials.
The petitioners also sought the issuance of a temporary protection order for the petitioners and their immediate family.
The petitioners said they “genuinely fear for their lives and security given the attendant circumstances surrounding the disappearance of their loved ones.”
They also asked the Court to issue an order of inspection allowing the petitioners, their lawyers, representatives of the Commission on Human Rights and health workers to inspect two military headquarters.
The “writ of amparo” is a protective remedy aimed at providing judicial relief consisting of appropriate remedial measures and directives to address specific violations or threats of violation of the constitutional rights to life, liberty, or security of individuals.
In a statement, the Student Christian Movement of the Philippines said it “fervently prays” that state forces surface the missing activists.
“What should disappear is disregard to life and human rights,” read the group’s statement.
Women’s group Gabriela said the recent “attacks” on Filipino activists and labor organizers “mirrored the atrocities committed by Ferdinand Marcos under martial law during the 1970s.
“In a time when the country is facing the worst economic crisis, when unemployment, poverty, and hunger are at the highest point, now more than ever, the people’s voices and demands must be heard,” read the group’s statement.