22 Filipina Women Among the Victims in Ampatuan Massacre
Source of Photo: Women light candles for the victims of abduction and killing in Maguindanao province southern Philippines during a rally marking the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in Quezon City Metro Manila, November 24, 2009. REUTERS/Cheryl Ravelo
Taken here: macondaily.com
Esmael Mangudadatu thought it was safe to let his wife file his Certificate of Candidacy (COCs). No men from the family went along since he believed that women would not be attacked by rivals. Journalists also came along with the convoy. Alas, Mangudadatu was wrong. The convoy was stopped by 100 armed men, who brought them away from the highway and then brutally shot them with M-16 rifles and machetes.
News Report on the brutality of the murder of the women in the Maguindanao Massacre. His account is just brutal beyond your wildest imagination.
“Esmael Mangudadatu said the body of his murdered wife had been horrifyingly mutilated and that his dead sister and aunt had both been pregnant.
‘We can’t call him an animal because I have pets and they are tame. No, he is a monster. They are monsters,’ Mangudadatu told reporters, referring to Ampatuan Jr. and his gunmen.
‘My wife’s private parts were slashed four times, after which they fired a bullet into it,’ he added.
In commemoration of the International Day for Women Human Rights Defenders, Rep. Liza Maza today led women from Karapatan and Gabriela in an all-women protest action in Mendiola, as they called for justice for the 22 women victims in the Maguindanao massacre.
“Women victims in the Maguindanao massacre were massacred twice over— their lives were brutally taken and they were sexually violated. I condemn in strongest terms these most reprehensible acts of violence,” Maza said, amid reports of the Department of Justice that the 22 women victims in the Maguindanao massacre were shot at their genitals.
Two women human rights defenders, Atty. Concepcion “Connie” Brizuela and Atty. Cynthia Oquendo, were among the 57 victims.
Atty. Brizuela has long been a passionate defender of women’s rights who worked tirelessly to end state violence against women in Mindanao region. She was also one of the lawyers of Gabriela Women’s Party during the past elections and handled women human rights cases. Atty. Oquendo was also known for her activism in health-related causes and in social justice movement. Maza said that Oquendo was a member of Gabriela during her student days.
“The killing of these two women human rights defenders shows the grave threats that loom before women during the election period and the violation of their human rights, particularly their right to participate in political processes,” she asserted.
To date, 62 bodies have been recovered.
Show your indignation and protest by signing an online petition on Strike against Impunity, Strike for Peace and Democracy
Today we say, “Enough.”
The massacre of 57 people in Ampatuan town, Maguindanao goes beyond a rido or clan war. The sheer scope of barbarity, the brazenness of the murders betrays the perpetrators’ belief in being beyond the reach of the law.
Women, lawyers and journalists – no one escaped the butchers’ wrath. Fifty-seven people killed in broad daylight. The murderers had planned the deed, down to the mass burial of victims. That is the mark of the untouchable.
I condemn the brutality of the Maguindanao Massacre. I will NOT let this pass. I want the whole the world to know, especially the Arroyo government that we will not stop until justice is delivered to the victims of the Ampatuan Massacre (otherwise known as Maguindanao Massacre) . I grieve for all the women, journalists and other innocent victims who suffered extreme violence and the brutal slaying.
I will make sure you did not die in vain.
We should not let allow this to happen again and we cannot allow this climate of impunity to reign.