Surigao refugees swell to more than 2,500

Dec. 05, 2007

Press Release
December 2, 2007

The Exodus of the Lumad Communities of Lagangan and Km. 22, Anahao Daan
evacuees swell to more than 2,500

Tago, Surigao del Sur More than 300 residents including children from Kilometer 22, Anahao Daan, Tago, evacuated to abandoned farm huts in Parina, part of Anahao Daan while more than 100 lumad residents of Lagangan went to the barangay hall in Caras-an, Tago, Surigao del Sur.

Like other residents of the lumad communities in Lianga and San Agustin, the new batch of evacuees left their farmland, homes and property in fear of what the military would do to them and of being caught in between the warring groups.

The lumad and settlers left their communities when the 58th IB PA arrived and stayed in their communities on November 25, 2007. Guns were pointed at the farmers when military men passed by their farmlands, their produce searched. As in the other communities, military men lived in civilian houses. And like the other lumad who evacuated, they were not able to bring food and belongings.

Military operations led by the 58th IB PA have continued for almost a month in the hinterland communities of the municipalities of Lianga, San Agustin, Tago and San Miguel, all of Surigao del Sur.

The new batch of evacuees are suffering from the loss of livelihood, hunger and illness as the barangay government of Anahao Daan could provide all of their daily needs. Unaccustomed to charity and longing to go back home, the evacuees need only the assurance that they will not be harmed as the military conducts its operations at a safe distance from civilian communities.

For Reference, contact:
Rev. Modesto Villasanta, UCCP,Spokesperson, Karapatan-SS CP. No.: 09192584146
Or Atty. Antonio Azarcon, Union of Peoples Lawyers in Mindanao (UPLM)
Tel. No.: (086) 211-3492

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