Fox has devoted her life to justice and peace and against poverty and human rights violations…She should not be deported. She should be able to continue working with the Church and the Filipino farmers as an advocate for peace, justice and human rights.
– Peter Murphy, Chairperson, Global Council of the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines
The arrest of Fox and other forms of threats against human rights advocates from the international community are clear and blatant forms of violation on the exercise of people’s right to extend international solidarity to victims of rights violations… She has been serving peasant communities in the country for decades, and thus her missionary work is true to the values of genuine community service.
– Cristina Palabay, Secretary General, KARAPATAN
April 17, 2018
Hon Ms Julie Bishop
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Canberra ACT 2600
Australian Nun arrested in the Philippines to be deported
We condemn the illegal arrest and detention yesterday afternoon in Manila, of Australian Sr. Patricia “Pat” Fox, and the threat of immediate deportation today. We have called for her immediate release and ask you to take urgent action to ensure that she is released unharmed from Immigration detention and allowed to return to her tasks.
Sr. Pat, 71, is a member of the Catholic congregation Sisters of Our lady of Sion, an Australian citizen who holds a missionary visa to work in the Philippines. She now works with the Union of Agricultural Workers (UMA) and Alliance for Genuine Agrarian Reform (PATRIA), and is a past national coordinator of Rural Missionaries of the Philippines.
Sr Pat joined a farmer-based international fact-finding mission in Mindanao earlier this month, which looked at the impact of Martial Law on poor peasants in the island.
At around 2:30pm yesterday, April 16, 2018, six intelligence officers of the Bureau of Immigration went to Sr. Pat’s house in Project 3, Quezon City, part of Metro Manila. The officers “invited” her to the Bureau for random checking of her immigration status. Sensing that she had no choice, Sr. Pat went with the officers, accompanied by a fellow sister.
On arrival at the Bureau of Immigration in Intramuros, Manila, at 4pm yesterday, Fox was told she was being arrested for joining rallies and “illegal political activities,” that she would be detained overnight and be deported today.
Fox has devoted her life to justice and peace and against poverty and human rights violations. Now the Duterte government is violating her basic rights – to due process, to information on why she is being arrested and to direct access to legal counsel. Sr Pat Fox should be released immediately. She should not be deported. She should be able to continue working with the Church and the Filipino farmers as an advocate for peace, justice and human rights.
Chairperson, Global Council of the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines
Cc Senator Penny Wong, Senator Di Natale, Andrew Wilkie MHR