On October 9, 2004, at approximately 3:15 am staff and members of KARAPATAN and EMJP, as well as some of there families and victims of human rights abuses who were staying at the compound, were awakened by 5 masked men shouting hostilities and banging loudly at the gate. Reportedly, the men also made remarks calling for justice to be done for the September 26, 2004 slaying of Arturo Tabara, founder of the Revolutionary Proletarian Army (RPMP-RPA, now RPA-ABB), by members of the New People’s Army.
This harassment lasted for roughly 30 minutes. When the men left, staff member who went down to the gates, reportedly found posters and flyers signed by the RPA-ABB baselessly accusing KARPATAN to the New People’s Army. The reason for this attack may be rooted in KARPATAN’s involvement in documenting human rights violations carried out by RPA-ABB, such as the 2002 murder of 67 year old leader of the National Federation of Sugar Workers, Pedro Trabajador.
LRWC is concerned by the harassment of KARPATAN, a non-violent human rights organization by RPA-ABB. LRWC has written officials in the Philippines calling for a full investigation of these events and that the persons responsible be brought to justice.
Letter Written October 27, 2004 by Charles B. Davidson