Death of trade activist to be brought to int’l tribunal

Mar. 16, 2015

Human rights group Karapatan will bring the death of fair trade activist, Romeo Capalla, before an International Peoples’ Tribunal.

The said tribunal, which will be held on July 2015 in Washington D.C., US, will be convened by the International Coalition on Human Rights in the Philippines, US-based National Lawyers Guild, International Association of Democratic Lawyers, and Ibon International. Human rights and people’s organizations in the Philippines, as well as victims and kin of victims of rights violations will serve as plaintiffs/complainants in the said tribunal.

Capalla, brother of Archbishop Fernando Capalla and board chairperson of the Panay Fair Trade Center, was killed on March 15, 2014 in Oton, Iloilo by gunmen believed to be members of the ABB-RPA paramilitary group.

Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay said Capalla’s name was in an Order of Battle list by the Armed Forces of the Philippines, together with the name of murdered Aklan councilor Fernando Baldomero who was killed on July 1, 2010, a day after President Benigno S. Aquino III’s inauguration as president.

Palabay said state forces responsible for the killing of Capalla have yet to be prosecuted “because of defective police investigation and deliberate attempts to shield them from accountability.”

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