For Immediate Release
February 6, 2014
Contact: Rossella De Leon, Secretary General, Portland Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines, 503.915.7283, firstname.lastname@example.org
Portland Filipinos Join Philippine American Solidarity Week
Portland, OR. - The Portland Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines (PCHRP) commemorates the anniversary of the Philippine-American War during Philippine American Solidarity Week beginning on February 4 to call attention to continuing struggle of the Filipino people against U.S. political and economic intervention. Joining organizations across the U.S. under the alliance, Bagong Alyansang Makabayan-USA (BAYAN-USA), PCHRP members stand in solidarity with the Filipino people for genuine sovereignty and lasting peace in the Philippines.
Since 1899, U.S. troops have maintained their presence in the Philippines through permanent military and naval bases and through military agreements and treaties that undermines Philippine sovereignty. These military bases have served as launching pads for U.S. imperialist aggression in Asia. With the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) and the Joint Force 2020 ventures, U.S. troops will continue imperialist aggression in the Asia-Pacific region, particularly in the Philippines.
On January 31, PCHRP members joined the Oregon Fair Trade Campaign to protest 20 years of NAFTA and say "NO" to the TPP fast track. The TPPA is a US-led multi-lateral free trade agreement pushing neoliberal agenda of trade liberalization and deregulation in the Asia Pacific region. TPPA protects corporate interest by opening every sector of the economy of involved countries to foreign investments; removing barriers and tariffs restricting trade (zero tariff by 2015); and granting foreign investors and corporations the right to sue governments if their investments are threatened by the latter's policies. "This is why fast tracking the TPPA is not in the interest of the people of the Philippines," stated Justin Katigbak, Mass Campaigns Officer for PCHRP.
As part of the week of Philippine American Solidarity activities, PCHRP is joining forces with Portland State University's Filipino American student organization, Kaibigan to host a film showing of "Dukot," a feature film tackling political issues and exposing the harsh realities of human rights violations, and extra-judicial killings in the Philippines. "We believe showing this film will help deepen our collective understanding of the role we play as Filipino Americans and non-Filipinos committed to solidarity with people in the Philippines," stated Angelica Lim, Education Officer of PCHRP and Political Chair of PSU Kaibigan.
"Just as the Filipino people resisted the American takeover in 1899, today we are continuing to resist U.S. imperialism and asserting the right of the Filipino people for a truly independent nation. We join the call of our compatriots in the Philippines to demand an end to expanded U.S. military access in the Asia Pacific and decisive action by the Aquino government to uphold national sovereignty. We also join with all oppressed peoples in building the broadest international solidarity against the TPPA and the military pivot as instruments of U.S. hegemony. As long as U.S. imperialism dominates the Philippines and other countries and peoples, Filipinos will continue their resistance launched in 1899," said Bernadette Ellorin, BAYAN-USA, Chair.
U.S. Troops Out of the Philippines!
No Fast Track of the TPPA!
Uphold and Respect Philippine Sovereignty!
PCHRP is an organization of Filipinos and allies working in solidarity to advance the national democratic movement of the Philippines in the U.S. PCHRP serves as an outlet for local, national, and international action alerts, media updates, and general information related to human rights violations against Filipinos in the Philippines and U.S. PCHRP is an affiliate of BAYAN USA, an alliance of 18 progressive Filipino organizations in the U.S. representing youth, students, women, workers, artists, and human rights advocates.