Philippine military targets fisherfolk leaders for liquidation

Manila, Philippines-Two fisherfolk leaders in Calatagan, Batangas said state security agents are out to liquidate them for their involvement in the community fight against landgrabbing in coastal shores and forr exposing the human rights violations committed by members of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) and the Philippine Army (PA) of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Survivors of extra-judicial killing— Crisanto Panganiban, 49 years old and one of the founders of Haligi ng Batangeunong Anakdagat in Calatagan (Habagat) and Daisy Ayo, 38 years old and also active leader of Habagat, an affiliate of the militant fisherfolk alliance Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) said the threat of extrajudicial killing is very serious although the incidents of slay try took place on them took place on July and October this year respectively. Pamalakaya vice chairperson Salvador France said Panganiban survived an assassination attempt on July 23 this year.

At around 1 p.m on that day, a tandem of motor riding hitmen believed to be members of the military shot the 49 year old leader along the national highway of Barangay Caretonan but Panganiban survived the slay attempt on his life. The Pamalakayua leader said Ayo was selling fish in Barangay Zobel on October 14 when two men riding on a motorcycle came and tried to shot her at close range. The fish vendor was shot on her thigh, but to still manage to escape from gunmen running after her. In 2010, France recalled that Ayo filed a harassment complaint against PFC D.Q Responde of the Philippine Army who was the commanding officer of 7 other members of the army who were based in said barangay.

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