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Philippine News Digest 63

October 24, 2003 · 


-172 child rebels captured

-26.5M Filipinos living below poverty line

-UN to hear alternative report on human rights situation in the Philippines

172 child rebels captured

Government troops have captured 172 children- 122 boys and 50 girls- recruited by the communist insurgents as combatants, courier guides, medics or spies in the past six years, according to official statement from the military. Citing statements from the New People’s Army openly boasting “more and more youth join the revolutionary movement,” the statement says the NPA is violating conventions on child soldiers. The captured children are turned over to the Department of Social Welfare and Development. Source: Agence France Press report in the Philippine Daily Inquirer, 9 October 2003.

26.5M Filipinos living below poverty line

An estimated 26.5 million Filipinos comprising 4.3 million families, about 34 percent of the population, are living below the poverty line, according to the latest poverty report by the National Statistics and Coordination Board (NSCB). This is a 10-percent increase in the number of the country’s poor population compared to 1997 when an estimated 24 million Filipinos comprising about 4 million families were living below the poverty line. A Filipino was considered poor if he didn’t have the means to satisfy his annual basic food and basic needs estimated to cost about P11,605 (roughly US $211) in 2000. Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer, 3 October 2003.

UN to hear alternative report on human rights situation in the Philippines

It is now the turn of non-government organizations (NGOs) to present their assessment of the situation of human rights in the Philippines after the government submitted its report earlier. The United Nations Committee on Human Rights (UNCHR) based in Geneva, Switzerland will hear on October 20 to 21 the alternative reports by three non-government organizations in the Philippines namely PREDA Foundation, Task Force Detainees of the Philippines and WEDPRO. PREDA Foundation, represented by Fr. Shay Cullen, will present the report on the violations of children’s rights; WEDPRO that on women’s rights; and TFDP, on the general situation of human rights in the country. Source: Internet News Network


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