The International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP) is holding an online global solidarity rally today, Saturday, March 6th, to support Indigenous run schools in the Philippines.
On Feb 15th, 2021 the University of San Carlos in Cebu was raided by police in what was termed a “rescue operation”. Two teachers and 24 students from the Indigenous Lumad community were arrested. We are calling for their immediate release.
Over 175 Lumad schools were created in Mindanao over the past 20 years to support Indigenous led education in remote and isolated communities. The curricula reflected Indigenous culture and practices and were recognized as providing a high quality education and excellent scholarship.
The Duterte regime has accused the schools as fostering resistance and has targeted them for closure. They have been occupied by the military, and have been burned and destroyed as part of ongoing counter insurgency operations. Several innocent leaders, students and teachers have been killed in the process.
Communities and schools have been forcibly relocated to urban areas where they can safely continue to live and operate. Universities like the University of San Carlos and University of the Philippines provided refuge for these Lumad students who have evacuated from their ancestral domains due to armed conflict.
The faculty and indigenous communities of Mindanao need your support and solidarity to fight against this oppression.