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Saturday, 18 December 2010 01:00

Filipino Health Workers 'Morong 43' Walk Free

In February 43 health workers, including two doctors, one registered nurse two midwives and 38 volunteer community health workers were arrested and accused of being trainees of the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines.

Two weeks ago representatives from the World Council of Churches, including Reverend Tara Curlewis, met with the Morong 43 in Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City. “As an international delegation we were thrilled to convey the good news that Leila De Lima , Secretary, Department of Justice had shared a few hours earlier that she hoped for a positive outcome in this case by Human Rights Day and definitely by the end of the year. This news brought tears to many in the group as it meant they may spend Christmas with their families” said Ms Curlewis.

“When we met with them in Camp Bagong Diwa we were amazed to see the hope these people had that justice would prevail for them. These community health workers, many just volunteers inspired us by their continuing concern for others. It was amazing to hear them say ‘we just want to be released because our patients need us’” said Ms Curlewis.

Churches in Australia and around the world will continue to monitor the human rights violations in the Philippines and encourage the Office of the President and the Department of Justice in the Philippines to persevere in rendering speedy justice for other political detainees and the prosecution of those guilty of human rights violations.

Rev Tara Curlewis is available for Interview

Media Enquiries: Debra Porter (02) 9299 2215

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