Raid on Lumad sanctuary highlights unresolved militarization


A police raid on a church compound in Davao City, where some 700 Lumads have sought refuge several months now, highlighted the unresolved issue of militarization and exposed how a congresswoman aids military forces.

This video by Kilab Multimedia shows the violent attempt by more than 100 members of the Philippine National Police to enter the evacuation camp yesterday, while alternative classes of displaced children were ongoing:

Several elderly Lumads were hurt in the raid, orchestrated with the help of North Cotabato Rep. Nancy Catamco, chair of the House Committee on Indigenous Peoples.

In an earlier press conference held at a military headquarters, Catamco vowed to “take the Lumads out” of the church compound at all costs—even as she has been declared “persona non grata” by the Lumads themselves.

Last week, Catamco brought military officers to the camp unannounced, traumatizing evacuees who had fled intense militarization in Talaingod, Davao del Norte. She had claimed to facilitate a dialogue to help the evacuees get back to their homes, but disrespected the indigenous leaders and called the children “smelly.”

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