Philippines: Journalist and family named on hit list

Philippine journalist Cong Corrales and his family’s names were included on an anonymous list allegedly naming members of the Philippines Communist Party. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its affiliate the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) strongly criticised the list and called on the authorities to immediately investigate, as well guarantee the safety of Corrales and his family.

The media in the Philippines has come under attack over the past month facing threats, cyber attacks and libel cases. Credit: NOEL CELIS / AFP

The anonymous list, which is referred to as ‘red tagging’ was published, allegedly referencing members of the Communist Party of the Philippines in Cagayan de Oro in Mindanao in the southern Philippines. Corrales the former director of the NUJP was named as well as his wife and son. The list also included various names from different background, ranging from religious leaders, lawyers, and groups working for human rights and the welfare of the lumad.

The NUJP in its statement said Red tagging is not mere intimidation. All too often it can be a virtual death sentence.

This incident comes after several journalists were named in an anonymous list of purported drug personalities in two Philippines cities.

“There is nothing more cowardly and deplorable than to vilify persons and put them in mortal peril behind the cloak of anonymity. Even media have not been spared from red-tagging and other acts clearly intended to intimidate a critical press into silence, as with the ongoing vilification campaign against the NUJP and the cyberattacks on alternative media,” said NUJP.

The IFJ said: “The safety of the media in the Philippines is an ongoing concern that is only further worsened by red-tagging and anonymous lists. The last month in Philippines has seen the media community face ongoing threats in various forms from red-tagging, cyber attacks and libel cases. Journalists cannot work in the increasingly threatening environment that they face in the Philippines. The IFJ calls on the government and authorities to respect democracy and press freedom, taking urgent action to put an end to the culture of violence and impunity in the Philippines.”

For further information contact IFJ Asia - Pacific on 
+61 2 9333 0918

The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 140 countries

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