Rural Missionaries denounce the violent dispersal of El Niño affected Cotabato farmers demanding aid
Manila, Philippines - The Rural Missionaries of the Philippines (RMP) joined the nation in denouncing the violent dispersal of farmers and indigenous peoples protest in Kidapawan City, North Cotabato this morning.
Today is the 3rd day of protest led by Kilusang Magbubukid ng Kotabato (KMK) where more than 6,000 farmers and indigenous peoples were demanding for assistance such as the 15,000 sacks of rice food aid as they are extremely affected by the El Niño phenomenon. At present, increasing numbers of wounded farmers and supporters have been documented and one confirmed dead.
“We hold the Aquino administration as responsible for this merciless act. The farmers who are crippingly affected by the drought, pushed to desperation, demanding aid, hence, their protest, are worse, responded with and confronted by a state-instigated viciousness,” Sr. Francis Añover, rsm, National Coordinator of RMP said.
RMP said that while Mindanao farmers and Lumad indigenous people were already subjected to a long period of gruesome militarization of their communities, the latest atrocity adds to the long list of immoralities by the Aquino regime against the rural poor.
“We urge church sectors to help and support the peasants’ struggle for land and justice. It is morally just to support the call for free land distribution to Filipino farmers as it would remove the landlessness, hunger, poverty and injustices in our country”, Añover called. ###
The RMP is a national organization, inter-congregational and inter-diocesan in character, of women and men religious, priests and lay. We live and work with the peasants (farmers, fisherfolks, indigenous peoples and agricultural workers).