/ 19 June 2021

THE COLLEGE Editors Guild of the Philippines denounced the killing of three members of the Lumad-Manobo tribe, including a 12-year-old student, by the military in Surigao del Sur last June 15.

Willy Rodriguez, Lenie Rivas and the 12-year-old Angel Rivas died when members of the 3rd Special Forces Battalion of the Philippine Army clashed with alleged New People’s Army rebels in Barangay Diatagon, Lianga town.

Maj. Rodulfo Cordero, 4th Infantry Division spokesperson, maintained that the three were NPA members.

“The College Editors Guild of the Philippines strongly condemns another brutal massacre in Lianga, Surigao del Sur under the Duterte regime,” CEGP said.

The group stressed that President Rodrigo Duterte and his cronies must be held accountable for “all their heinous crimes against the people.”

“This regime persists in its tactics of tagging ‘being critical’ to criminality and dissent to terrorism,” it said.

The group Anakbayan called for the withdrawal of soldiers from Lumad ancestral lands, recalling the massacre in Lianga in September 2015.

The group also sought a stop to the killing of environmental defenders, indigenous people, and farmers.

“For as long as Duterte’s rule of terror and feudalism persists, the violent attacks will never stop. We must hold the Duterte administration accountable for crimes against humanity. Justice for Lianga 2,” it said.