The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) says the Philippines
Government must immediately explain the purpose of an “Order of Battle” list
reportedly produced by the 10th Infantry Division of the Philippines Army,
based in Mindanao,
and which includes names of journalists.
According to the National Union of Journalists
of the Philippines (NUJP), an IFJ affiliate,
the list includes more than 100 names of people allegedly belonging to “legal
fronts” of the communist rebel movement,
including former NUJP secretary
general Carlos Conde.
In a public statement on May 26,
division spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Kurt Decapia said the order had been falsified
and manipulated by the congressman who discovered it.
“The implications of this for Mr Conde are bad enough. But we also worry
for the more than 800 members of the NUJP
nationwide, particularly those in Davao and Southern Mindanao who, because of
the 10th Infantry Division’s recalcitrance, are now endangered,” the
NUJP said in a statement on May 27.
“Any government-produced document that openly vilifies legal
personalities and organisations as enemies of the state has the potential to
endanger these people’s lives,” IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.
“The Government of Gloria Arroyo-Macapagal must accept responsibility not
just for its silence on impunity against journalists but for actively
encouraging suspicion and violence against the Philippines media community.”
The failure of the Arroyo Government to intervene to end the culture of
impunity against the Philippines
media has earned the Philippines
an unenviable reputation as one of the most dangerous countries for journalists
in the world.
Of the seven journalists killed in the Philippines in 2008, six were murdered. Already this year, two journalists have survived murder attempts
after the fatal shooting of radio broadcaster Ernie Rollin on February 23.
More than 60 journalists have been killed since the President Arroyo came
into power in 2001. This is the worst media death toll under any Philippines
president, the NUJP reports.
The IFJ calls on regional and international affiliates and the international
media community to send messages of solidarity to the NUJP
as it continues its courageous work to uphold press freedom in the Philippines
despite the great risks.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific
on +612 9333 0919
represents over 600,000 journalists in
120 countries worldwide